Affirmative Action and Employment Equity in South Africa: Dilemma or Dream Answer
Over the past decade South Africa has implemented employment equity and affirmative action policies according to legislation promulgated after the first democratic elections in 1994. There was a clear need for these radical changes due to various reasons – the most important perhaps from an international perspective the necessity to integrate South Africa into the global economy, and from a national perspective the dire need to redress the imbalances brought about by the country’s past history. This paper explores the controversial question of whether the implementation of affirmative action and employment equity legislation and policies has been the answer to the challenges unique to South Africa. Is it the solution it promised to be? Is it, for instance, the creator of a form of reversed discrimination? What is the organisational justice perception regarding affirmative action? Can the country redress past discrimination and boost productivity at the same time whilst skills development is not as yet on par?
Keywords: Employment equity, Affirmative action
Lecturer, Human Resource Management