05/07/2017 12:08 BST | Updated 05/07/2017 12:08 BST

ANC's Social Transformation Sub-Committee Focuses on Women and Children

Most of the recommendations made by the sub-committee focus on issues that directly affect communities.

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Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu.

Sanitary pads should be free and the minimum sentence for violence against women should be between 15 and 20 years.

These are some of the recommendations that have come from the African National Congress' sub-committee on social transformation.

Addressing the media on the outcomes of commissions at the party's 5th National Policy Conference this week, Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu and newly elected Deputy Minister for Women Affairs Buti Manamela agreed that social transformation is an underbelly of South Africa's Freedom Charter.

"We are worried about the social fabric of society," Sisulu said.

Here are some of the recommendations that the party will take back to its branches ahead of the national conference in December:

  • Sanitary pads should be made free to girls in schools.
  • Physical education should be compulsory in all schools.
  • Libraries should have books that reflect the "people and culture" of South Africa.
  • Specialised children's courts need to be established and violence against children be prioritised.
  • The minimum sentence for violence against women should be between 15 and 20 years imprisonment.
  • The age for child support grants should be extended from 18 to 21, provided the beneficiaries are still studying.
  • Hate crimes must be established as a priority legislation.
  • LGBTQIA+ communities should be regarded as a vulnerable sector of society.
  • Legislation needs to be established to curb the abusing of traditional and religious practices for the benefit of individuals.
  • All state and public land near cities should be given to human settlements first, before considering selling it off. All unused building within cities should be turned into residential units.

Sisulu said the party is concerned about social issues such as poverty, xenophobia and incidents of racism.

Manamela said there was a strong view from the conference that the party needs to put in strong legislation to deal with "people who damage public property".

"We have seen recently where communities protesting lead to the destruction of schools and other public property," Manamela said, adding that the ANC strongly condemns this behaviour.

The ANC in Gauteng recommended that prostitution be decriminalised, but Sisulu said the notion would be shut down.