Prison warders finally get salary promised - in 2009

2016-11-21 19:10
(Picture: AFP)

(Picture: AFP)

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Johannesburg - Correctional Services employees have finally won a protracted battle to have their salaries increased.

On Monday the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) said the department had finally agreed to implement the second phase of the occupation specific dispensation (OSD) for correctional officials.

The agreement was reached in 2009 but the department has until now failed to implement the pay increases affecting more than 22 000 employees.

Popcru said low-level employees who have been with the department for long periods but without being promoted stand to benefit the most from the increment.

"The resolution was to ensure that old members within correctional services, many of them go to pension still on the lower levels of salary grades, but this agreement ensures that while not promoted, their long service is recognised and rewarded," Popcru's Sebuti Masemola told News24.

Masemola said the implementation of the increment means that employees' salaries will be upgraded and payment backdated to April 2010. The increases will be added to the annual public service workers' increases received over the past years.

Warders under pressure

"All persons who had five years or more in the Department of Correctional Services by the 30th of June 2009 on salary levels 5-8, including those whose services have been terminated and those that have been promoted to managerial posts, qualify for translation and back pay as contained in the settlement agreements," Popcorn said in a statement.

Masemola said the salary adjustments are necessary as prison centres are overcrowded and understaffed, putting warders, especially, under pressure.

Popcru has blamed unstable leadership within the department for failure to implement the seven-year agreement that saw members threaten to go on strike.

"[The] employer was reluctant to resolve this matter and also we should understand that correctional services has had many ministers and commissioners over the years and everyone who came in wanted to be briefed on this outstanding matter," Masemola said.

He said now that this chapter has been closed, they can now focus on other matters plaguing the department. 

Read more on:    popcru  |  correctional services  |  labour

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