In South Africa Racism and Sexism are different sides of the same coin. The Constitution allows for non-racialism and non-sexism together with the elimination and remedy of gender equality.
The key focus of the National Gender Machinery was, inter alia;
- To build a critical mass of women leaders, executives and managers in strategic decision making positions; and
- Review the 30% quota with regard to women in decision making positions in the public service in line with the new 50% parity clause of SADC Heads of State.
The Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment Act of 2003 sought to increase the participation of previously disadvantaged groups, with women within these groups being particularly singled out.
In addition to the BBBEE Act, South Africa has had an upgrade of the Companies Act which should also have a long term positive impact on gender equality and women's development.
The Minister may prescribe that a company or category of companies must have a Social & Ethics Committee. The Minister has in fact prescribed this for every listed company and any other company above 500 points.
The function of these committees include;
- Monitoring company activities with regards to relevant legislation;
- Good corporate citizenship including the company's promotion of equality, unfair discrimination and its educational development of its employees.