Equal Opportunities Policy | Concargo

Equal Opportunities Policy

Diversity Policy

Concargo is committed to providing equal opportunities in employment and to avoid unlawful discrimination in employment or to clients.

The Company will avoid unlawful discrimination in all aspects of employment including recruitment, promotion, opportunities for training, pay and benefits, discipline and selection for redundancy.

Job applicants or employees will receive equal treatment regardless of sex (which may include gender reassignment), pregnancy, colour, race, nationality, ethnic or national origins, sexual orientation, disability, age, religion or belief, or because someone is married or is a civil partner.

This Equal Opportunities Policy aims to advance Concargo’s business objectives by ensuring that people are treated solely on the basis of their merits, abilities, and achievement of results. It applies to all people recruited specifically for, and engaged solely on, Concargo’s business, regardless of their employment status.

This Equal Opportunities Policy is integral to fair and effective management, is part of Concargo’s Business Management System and is implemented through our management system procedures which meet South African requirements.

Compliance with this Policy is mandatory and responsibility rests with all Directors and employees. Every employee is required to assist the Company to meet its commitment to provide equal opportunities in employment and avoid unlawful discrimination.

Sometimes our light goes out, but is blown again into flame by an encounter with another human being. Each of us owes the deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this inner light.

Albert Schweitzer

You will always have everything in life that you want, if you help enough other people get what they want.

Zig Ziglar

Equal Opportunities Definitions

Direct Discrimination

Direct discrimination takes place when a person is treated less favourably than another (in the same circumstances) on grounds such as but not limited to race, colour, national or ethnic origin, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, class, age or religious belief.

Indirect Discrimination

Indirect discrimination means applying a condition, or requirement which adversely affects one particular group considerably more than another, and cannot be strictly justified in terms of the requirements for performing the job.

Racial Discrimination

Discrimination on the grounds of colour, race, nationality (including citizenship), ethnic or national origins. The policy is directed towards the effects of racial discrimination in employment, as set down in the Race Relations Act 1976.

Sex Discrimination

Discrimination on the grounds of a person’s sex or marital status. Concargo is committed to countering discrimination against women in all its forms including the recognition that employment practices should acknowledge the demands of childcare and the care of other dependents.

Discrimination on the Grounds of Sexual Orientation

Discrimination on the grounds of not being heterosexual. Concargo acknowledges that discrimination against lesbians and gay men is more complicated by the fact that lesbians and gay men are not necessarily identifiable. We remain committed to acknowledging different sexualities and supporting job applicants and employees to be open about their sexual orientation. All Concargo jobs will therefore be open to lesbians and gay men.

Discrimination on the Grounds of Religion

Where the employees have particular cultural or religious needs which may conflict with existing work requirements. Concargo will consider whether it is reasonably practicable to vary or adopt these requirements to enable any such need to be met. Although the Race Relations Act does not specifically cover religious discrimination, such requirements would generally be unlawful if they have a disproportionate adverse affect on particular racial groups and cannot be shown to be justifiable.

Discrimination on the Grounds of Class

In the area of recruitment and promotion, all stated entry requirements must be clearly justifiable in terms of the principal functions of the post. Any skills specified should be strictly relevant to the requirements of the job. These should not be unnecessarily restrictive so as to exclude any disadvantaged group or class.

Gender Reassignment

The SDA 1975 outlaws direct and indirect discrimination and victimization on grounds of gender, i.e. male or female and on grounds of marital status. The Act was amended on 1 May 1999 by the Sex Discrimination (Gender Reassignment) Regulations 1999, which make discrimination on the basis of gender reassignment (transsexualism) unlawful in the areas of employment and vocational training. Transsexualism is a desire to live and be accepted as a member of the opposite sex, usually accompanied by a sense of discomfort with, or inappropriateness of, one’s anatomic sex and a wish to have hormonal treatment and surgery to make one’s body as congruent as possible with the preferred sex. (International Classification of Disorders). The procedure of hormonal treatment and surgery that transsexuals seek is called gender reassignment. The condition is to be distinguished from being a transvestite. Transvestites wear the clothes of the opposite sex as a temporary experience, but are content with their birth sex and are not accepted for hormone treatment or gender reassignment surgery.

Harassment

Harassment is defined as: unwanted conduct which violates a person’s dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive working environment for that person. The courts have provided three further guidelines, as follows.

  1. Harassment is normally characterized by more than one incident of unacceptable behaviour, particularly if it reoccurs once it has been made clear that the recipient regards the behaviour as offensive. However, just one incident may constitute harassment if it is sufficiently serious.
  2. Each employee is free to decide what behaviour is either acceptable or unacceptable. So, it does not matter what the harasser thinks, or indeed what other colleagues may think. If the employee being subjected to the behaviour finds it unacceptable and she or he feels damaged or harmed by it, this constitutes harassment.
  3. Silence is not necessarily acceptance of one individual’s behaviour towards another. In many cases, victims may be reluctant to complain because, for example, of the seniority of the harasser, fear of the consequences in terms of their job security or the fear that no one will believe them.

Bullying

Although there is no specific legislation outlawing bullying in South Africa, bullying can lead to claims of unfair constructive dismissal against the employer. Bullying is a gradual wearing down process that makes individuals feel demeaned and inadequate. In order to solve the problem of workplace bullying, it has to be recognized. A working definition of bullying is: any unsolicited or unwelcome act, which humiliates, intimidates or undermines the individual involved and which is aimed at making that person feel worthless. It is for each individual to determine what is acceptable to him or her and what he or she regards as offensive. Concargo will not condone any harassment/bullying of any employee and is committed to grievance and disciplinary procedures that will provide the appropriate redress.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination and is unlawful. It occurs in a variety of situations which all share a common aspect, the inappropriate introduction of sexual activities or comments into the work situation. All employees have the right to work in an environment free from sexual intimidation. Sexual harassment takes many forms, from relatively mild sexual banter to actual physical violence. Employees may not always realise that their behaviour constitutes sexual harassment but they must recognise that what is acceptable to one person may not be acceptable to another. Sexual harassment is unwanted behaviour of a sexual nature by one employee towards another such as:

    • insensitive jokes and pranks
    • unnecessary and unwelcome physical contact, touching or patting
    • suggestive and unwelcome comments or gestures emphasising the sexual orientation of an individual or of a group
    • unwelcome or derogatory remarks regarding the sexual orientation or preference of an individual or a group, including speculation about a person’s private life and sexual activities
    • unwelcome requests for social-sexual encounters or favours
    • display of pornographic pictures
    • acts such as indecent exposure or sexual assault

Sexual harassment occurs when any such behaviour creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment for employment, or for social life.

Racial Harassment

Racial harassment is difficult to define in terms of what is acceptable or unacceptable behaviour, but may be defined as a hostile or offensive act or expression by a person or group of one ethnic origin against a person or group of another, or incitement to commit such an act, on racial grounds. Such behaviour includes:

      • Derogatory name-calling
      • Insults and racist jokes
      • Ridicule of an individual for cultural differences
      • Exclusion from conversations, normal work activities or social events
      • Unfair allocation of work or responsibilities
      • Racist graffiti or insignia
      • Displaying abusive writing and pictures
      • Verbal abuse or threats
      • Physical attack

Racial harassment occurs when any such behaviour creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment for employment, or for social life. Differences of attitude or culture and the misinterpretation of social signals can mean that what is perceived as racial harassment by one person may not seem so to another. The defining features, however, are that the behaviour is offensive or intimidating to the recipient and would be regarded as racial harassment by any reasonable person.

Disability

The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 defines “disabled person” as a person with “a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on his ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”.

Responsibility

Any Concargo employee who suffers harassment will have the full support of Concargo in putting a stop to it. Anyone who experiences or witnesses an incident of harassment should not wait until the situation reaches an intolerable level – action taken at once can be quickly effective. Concargo will also support members and staff against false accusations of harassment, bullying, intimidation and unfairness.

Family Friendly Policies for Staff

These cover the areas of: Maternity, Adoption, Paternity Leave, Parental Leave, Childcare Allowance, Time off for Dependents (Emergency Carer’s Leave), Compassionate Leave and Leave for Fertility Treatment. Please contact the Human Resources Development Manager for more details.