Prison staff were discriminated against

2013-10-18 20:09
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Cape Town - The correctional services department must take immediate steps to take both national and regional demographics into account when setting equity targets, the Labour Court in Cape Town ruled on Friday.

This was applicable at all levels of the department’s work force.

Judge Hilary Rabkin-Naicker ruled in favour of 10 Western Cape Correctional Service officials who had challenged the department's employment equity plan.

Initially five officials challenged the department and they were followed by another five, who had been overlooked for promotion on racial grounds.

Trade union Solidarity, which took up the matter on behalf of the 10, said in a statement earlier that coloured employees were disadvantaged by the use of national demographics in the implementation of affirmative action targets.

The judge ruled that all 10 officials were black employees in terms of the Employment Equity Act.

He found that they had suffered unfair discrimination in the selection process used for promotion to various posts.

Solidarity deputy general secretary Dirk Hermann said in the earlier statement: "In terms of the DCS's affirmative action plan, the national demography has to be reflected in every workplace, even at a provincial and regional level.

"As a result, in the Western Cape, coloured employees, in particular, almost have no chance anymore to be promoted or appointed."

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