Spouses have no right to sleep together at shelters - SCA

2016-05-19 12:53


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

Bloemfontein – The Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein on Wednesday set aside a judgement by the South Gauteng High Court stating that certain rules of an urban shelter, including the sleeping arrangements of couples, were constitutionally invalid.

The High Court had ruled that some rules of an overnight shelter infringed the residence's constitutional rights to dignity, freedom and security of person.

The SCA said while husbands and wives and permanent life partners had a constitutional right to live together, they do not always have the right to sleep together.

"There are instances in which this right must yield, albeit temporarily, to broader practical demands such as those related to the reason for which the Shelter was designed. In context, the provision of temporary accommodation separated on the basis of gender, is not unreasonable and therefore not unconstitutional," the court said.

"The SCA found that the rules of [Metropolitan Evangelical Services] in the shelter offered by the City, in an attempt to accommodate the occupiers in an emergency situation are not, in themselves, unreasonable and that the appeal must succeed."

According to the shelter's other rules, residents cannot enter the premises after 20:00 and they have to sign a register every night. All residents are required to vacate the shelter by 08:00, Monday to Friday, and at 09:00 on Saturdays and Sundays.

The residents had originally been evicted from a dilapidated building on Saratoga Avenue, Berea, Johannesburg. The City of Johannesburg then asked Metropolitan Evangelical Services (MES) to house them after the Constitutional Court had ordered the city to provide the evictees with temporary accommodation.

Read more on:    bloemfontein  |  human rights

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

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 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.