01 February 2013

SAHA and SAHRC deliver 2nd community training for Soweto residents on PAIA

Poster with words "there shall be housing for all"

The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and SAHA continue to work together to support Soweto residents in their fight for access to information.

On Friday 1 February, the second session took place in Phiri, Soweto. The session was attended by community leaders and ordinary members from various sections in Soweto.

As previously reported by SAHA, the two organisations have come up with a three-part programme designed to raise awareness about the right to information and to train community leaders to use the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) to realize that right.

Residents were trained on how to use the forms and procedures in PAIA to get answers from government departments about electricity, housing allocation and evictions, youth unemployment, health, safety and security. The session reinforced these tools, discussed the results of the residents' recent PAIA requests, and gave residents ways to move forward with appeals if their requests are denied. 

In addition to reflecting on the past session, the second workshop assessed responses to the initial PAIA request, assessing information released and looking at the internal appeal process.Participants were left motivated and encouraged to continue persuing their right to information.

The final training session will occur in Soweto at the end of March 2013.