Additional Sick Leave

12. Additional Sick Leave

12.1 Where an employee’s existing sick leave entitlement has been exhausted, the employer should give due cinsideration to the granting of additional paid sick leave in cases of serious harassment, where the employee, on medical advice, requires trauma counselling.

A current trend or for more sinister reasons the aleged perpetrator may me place on Special Leave under extra Ordinary Circumstances as some harassment may be as a result of an suspected disorder like ADHD or ASD and or any of the other mental condition for which treatment may or may not be possible for. In the case of ASD a different approach will be required as medication itself will not cure or alter the state of being ASD. In cases where ADHD plays a role and medicine can improve the behaviour and performance of the employee, different approach is necessary as guided by the EEA and the Constitution, backed up by research. If medicine can alter behaviour then the employee when prescribed, be compelled to continue taking it, and for the effectiveness to be measured by the employer as well as his doctor. Where a diagnosis has been done and the employee is on medication, no mitigating factors can be used to avoid the consequences. Only during a disciplinary hearing should a medical report be requested from a specialist doctor. 

The granting of leave of medical leave should in fact only happen as a result of a sanction of suspension pending an investigation into the medical condition. If the the perpetrator refuses the sanction of dismissal could be implimented regardless of the persons mental condition. 

12.2 If harassment results in an employee being ill for longer than two weeks, the employee may be entitled to claim illness benefits in terms of section 20 of the Unemployment Insurance Act.

For Government employees an application for incapacity leave can be made and submitted to the employer’s. A report from the employee’s personal doctor must be included in the application process. The employer can ask that his own Health Risk Manager be requested to also study the documents and to make a recommendation to the employer. If the Harassment leads to permanent incapacity a claim of Occupational injury can be instituted and the Pillar process be implemented.

12.3 In appropriate circumstances, employers may give consideration to assisting with the cost of the medical advice and trauma counselling and care, where such amounts are not covered by any applicable medical aid scheme.

Also where the employee has no medical aid cover could the employee be supported financially by the employer, in regard to assistance with any medical cost occurred as a result of the harassment.