Applicability of the occupational justice and occupation-based community development frameworks for social transformation: Marikana event

Thuli Mthembu


Background: The Occupational justice framework is significant in enabling communities to collaborate with occupational therapists to strengthen social vision and to enhance the occupational potential. It has been highlighted that the occupational justice framework could be used in conjunction with Occupation-based Community Development programmes to enrich social transformation through engagement in community-led occupations. However, little is known about the applicability of both occupational justice and Occupation-based Community Development frameworks in designing programmes for communities that experienced collective trauma after the Marikana event. Purpose: This commentary explores and describes the Marikana event in terms of the occupational justice framework and its outcomes of occupational injustice. It further unpacks the occupation of protest and the factors predicting protest using the Marikana event. Key Issues: Critical reflections of mineworkers' movements are used to enhance an understanding of the occupational lens of the protest in addressing conditions of social reproduction in communities. Conclusion: The applicability of the occupational justice and Occupation-based Community Development frameworks can help occupational therapy clinicians, educators, and students to collaborate with communities through a cycle of critical consciousness to achieve social vision, social transformation, and healing. Recommendations are provided in relation to community-centred occupational therapy practice, education, and future research within a South African context.


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ISSN 0038-2337 (print), ISSN 2310-3833 (online)

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