Solidarity and the SA Police Service (SAPS) have reached a historic settlement that directly affects the promotion of more than 3000 SAPS members, the trade union said on Sunday.
In terms of the settlement, the SAPS conceded that its current employment equity plan had to be amended following the recent Constitutional Court ruling in the trade union’s case against the correctional services department (DCS), Solidarity said in a statement.
This comes after Solidarity, in April 2016, obtained an urgent interdict in the Labour Court to halt the promotion of the 3 000 SAPS members until the Constitutional Court had given a ruling on the lawfulness of the DCS’s employment equity plan.
Solidarity chief executive Dirk Hermann said the settlement also stipulated that Solidarity’s more than 30 individual affirmative action cases against the SAPS would be investigated with a view to reaching a possible settlement.
“This settlement is a huge step forward for Solidarity and its members as it would offer our members and other members of minority groups a better opportunity to be promoted, as would have been the case had the targets in the SAPS’s current employment equity been used as criterion for promotions,” Hermann said.
Earlier this year, the Labour Court found that the SAPS’s previous employment equity Plan (2010-2014) was unlawful and invalid, as it imposed quotas. The current promotions would have been made on the basis of a similar plan.
“It was critical for us to stop promotions based on a plan similar to one that had already been invalidated until a more equitable process could be negotiated. However, the settlement does not deprive us of the right to still lodge disputes on behalf of individuals who had been treated unfairly during the promotion process,” Hermann said.
Under the latest settlement, more than 300 individual grievances about non-promotion of Solidarity members on the basis of the previous unlawful plan would also be handled with a view to reaching a possible settlement.
The SAPS had also undertaken to take into account Solidarity’s comments on the current plan and its proposals for amendment when amending the plan.
“We are now also being recognised as a player as far as the implementation and monitoring of the plan is concerned,” Hermann said.
– African News Agency (ANA)