The matter between Solidarity, the trade union that draws most of its support from white blue collar workers, and South African Police Service (SAPS) on the legality of the practice of Employment Equity (EE) in appointments is more complex than it appears. Opponents of EE might have not got the outcome they desired. However, at the very least, they should be content with overwhelming media attention on the matter, thus far.
The fairness of EE can be contested upon until chickens come to roost. Even so, unless you are a resident on a different planet or wear rose tinted glasses and have a perverted perception of reality, South Africa has a notoriety of being one of the world’s unequal countries – a sorry legacy of its past. The majority black population is still stuck on the margins of economic activities. So, of the ‘unfair’ practices available, to date, EE is the less evil option to redress the mess.
To value the relevance of EE better, don’t be swayed by the following myths peddled by idealistic liberals:
- The only way to create a colour-blind society is to adopt colour-blind policies.
- It is not succeeding in increasing female and previously disadvantaged individuals’ representation.
- EE may have been necessary 20 years ago, but the playing field is fairly level today
- The public doesn’t support EE anymore
- You can’t cure discrimination with discrimination
- EE undermines the self-esteem of the intended beneficiaries