Solidarity slams Unisa's affirmative action plan, wants Labour department to intervene

2019-07-16 20:54


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Trade union Solidarity has asked that the Department of Labour intervene in stopping the University of South Africa (Unisa) from implementing its proposed promotion criteria, arguing that it is in contravention of the Employment Equity Act (EEA).

They have also asked that the university senate revisit the criteria in order "to produce a more equitable outcome".

In terms of the promotion criteria, designated employees would be eligible for promotion or appointment, based on a lower standard or reduced minimum standards, the trade union argued.

Designated group

"Individuals of the designated group need not have the same qualifications and or experience than their white counterparts to be eligible for promotions or appointment," said Annika Labuschagne, of Solidarity's centre for fair labour practices. 

The university defines "designated groups" as black people, women and people with disabilities. 

In its staff transformation plan, the university notes that in line with the EEA, "Unisa is required to develop an Employment Equity plan and set numerical goals that will accelerate measures towards achieving demographic representation of designated groups in each occupational level where under representation has been identified".

The reason Unisa gives for doing so is to achieve the objectives set in its affirmative action plan with the ultimate goal of having Unisa's workforce reflect the country's economically active population (EAP).

Insurmountable obstacle  

But Solidarity says the criteria raises an insurmountable obstacle for all individuals not from the designated group.

"The criteria can create possible absolute barriers for individuals not belonging to the designated group... Therefore, we hope that the university and the department will both step in to establish a fairer application," said Labuschagne. 

"If this does not happen, we will be ready to take legal action and to act on behalf of our members at Unisa and elsewhere."

Read more on:    solidarity  |  unisa  |  employment equity

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.