‘Firing’ court case

2017-09-26 06:00
Community members support the “Shoprite 8” outside Wynberg Magistrate’s Court

Community members support the “Shoprite 8” outside Wynberg Magistrate’s Court

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The court case of eight workers arrested for accepting tips at Shoprite in Pelican Park in August has been postponed to next month. The former cashiers charged with theft are to appear in the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court on Friday 20 October and are currently being represented by Access to Justice. Shaheed Mohamed of the Workers International Vanguard Party says supporters partook in a peaceful protest outside court on the day.

“The organisation representing them has decided to champion their cause and to hold Shoprite to account for their human rights abuses. No worker should have to face the indignity of being handcuffed and bound to a wall. And they were tossed in jail when they clearly posed no flight risk is another outrage.”

The Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) is also investigating the matter. “This is currently being investigated, on its own accord – the conditions of the detainment of the female staff at Shoprite Pelican Park on the 16 August,”says Linda Nyati, a legal officer at the organisation’s Cape Town offices.

“In terms of our enabling legislation, the Commission for Gender Equality Act the CGE has a mandate to promote and protect gender equality in government, civil society and the private sector,” she adds.

The CGE was “appalled” to read in the media about the manner in which the seven female staff members were detained in the store prior to their arrest, Nyati says. “What was even more inexcusable, and could point to a policy gap, was the issue of a pregnant female allegedly being cuffed in a standing position for a couple of hours.”

The workers are to appear in court next month and call on the community to support them.

V For more information contact Sheena Jonker from Access to Justice on 084 377 3340 or email Sheena@accesstojustice.co.za, or Shaheed Mohamed on 082 202 0617.

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