[lg policy] South Africa: Afrikaans? No raise for you!

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at GMAIL.COM
Tue May 28 14:36:17 UTC 2013


Afrikaans? No raise for you!Mon, 27 May 2013 9:00 AM

Solidarity has taken up the case of a prison official whose application for
a salary adjustment was apparently refused, because he completed the
necessary documents in Afrikaans

The case was set to be heard by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation
and Arbitration on June 20, Solidarity spokesman Dirk Groenewald said in a
statement.

He claimed Wynand Heyns, an employee at the Voorberg Prison, in
Porterville, in the Western Cape, was a victim of unfair discrimination.

"Solidarity is asking for Heyns to receive the necessary salary adjustment
and for the department of correctional services to implement a valid
language policy," he said in a statement.

Groenewald said Heyns submitted performance evaluation documents to the
department in June.

The department wrote to him asking him to resubmit the documents in
English, and when he did not, it notified him that he had not qualified for
the salary adjustment.

He then lodged an internal grievance, but was told this too had not
succeeded and that an English copy of the documents was still required.

Groenewald said the department's language policy was "unconstitutional".

"It discriminates against Heyns on the grounds of language, which amounts
to unfair discrimination."

He said a national department should use its discretion to communicate via
three official languages.

Departmental spokesman Koos Gerber said that, for practical purposes,
correctional services used English as its official medium of communication.

He said, that since the department employed more than 40,000 officials in
almost 500 locations, it would be an "administrative impossibility" to
allow each official to submit assessment documents in the language of their
choice.

Anyone who struggled with English, would be assisted.

"That is what has been happening and it is still happening," he said.

Gerber said both the employer and employee had to show a "willingness" to
resolve the problem.

"In the case of Mr Heyns, it is however difficult to understand why there
should be a problem, because Mr Heyns certified on his application for
employment in the department that he can read, write and speak both English
and Afrikaans," said Gerber.


http://business.iafrica.com/news/861337.html

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