Race and gender equality at work: The role of the judiciary in promoting workplace transformation

Authors Emma Fergus, Debbie Collier

ISSN: 1996-2126
Affiliations: Institute of Development and Labour Law, Faculty of Law, University of Cape Town; None
Source: South African Journal on Human Rights, Volume 30 Issue 3, 2014, p. 484 – 507


The workplace is an important site of struggle for equality, a struggle mediated by the provisions of the Employment Equity Act. It is within the context of this regulatory framework for both formal and substantive equality, that this article is located. Through the lens of selected case law, the article explores certain barriers to transformation imposed both by the provisions of the law and by poor judicial interpretations and implementation thereof. It identifies and analyses various legal complexities, lacunae and anomalies, as well as concerns regarding aspects of the judiciary’s approach to remedies in matters with the potential to impact on workplace transformation. The article concludes with proposals for possible future considerations by the courts, which might better promote race and gender transformation.