16 April 2021

Private Security Bargaining Council accused of partisanship in recent decision

Submitted by Mark Beckman
Private Security Bargaining Council accused of partisanship in recent decision

Agreement exemption extended exclusively to two employers’ associations

The National Bargaining Council for the Private Security Sector (NBCPSS) recently announced the extension of its main agreement for all private security employers and employees to February 2022. The agreement regulates working conditions, wages, benefits and contributions between employers and their employees for the private security industry.

Notwithstanding this, the Consolidated Employers Organisation (CEO), representing approximately 400 employers ranging from small, medium-sized and large private security employers, pointed out to its members in a circular on 12 April 2021, the Bargaining Council has been extremely selective with the Main Agreement that was extended to the whole industry. This is because SASA (Security Association of South Africa) and SANSEA (South African National Security Employers' Association) have obtained an exemption from the Premium Allowance benefit in the agreement, for their members only. Even more curious is that organisations such as CEO only learned about the extension after being informed of attempts to tout members away from CEO and other employers’ organisations.

“SASA and SANSEA sought an exemption only for themselves, not anyone else in the industry,” said Johann Preiss, the National Collective Bargaining Co-ordinator for CEO. “This is despite the fact that CEO was also party to the council. We have been unduly excluded from such council developments.”

The Bargaining Council’s circular set out the details of the new arrangement. SASA and SANSEA brought an Exemption application in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and, after an agreement was reached with Organised Labour, they were granted an Exemption (view here) in the following terms:

  • Effective 1 March 2021 the members of SASA and SANSEA are exempted from payment of the increase to Security Officer Premium Allowances provided in terms of clause 4(4) of the Bargaining Council’s Main Collective Agreement (“MCA”) above that stipulated for year one.
  • The current premium allowance of R175.00 remains payable to employees for SASA and SANSEA members. 

Other parties were reminded of their right to apply for Exemption. “If the parties to the agreement genuinely had the interests of the industry at heart, they would have rather repealed clause 4: Security Office Premium Allowance in its entirety, alternatively Year 1 (2021) of this clause, for the whole industry,” Preiss wrote in a notice to CEO members. “In the absence of such a repeal, with this exemption granted for only themselves, this clause, of the very agreement they negotiated (among themselves) and extended to everyone else in the industry, is now applicable to everyone else in the industry, except for the very parties that negotiated this clause of the agreement. CEO regards this as a true miscarriage of justice.” There is concern that when CEO and other employers’ representatives bring applications to the NBCPSS that they will not be granted.

CEO will also be applying for the same exemption of their members, where possible, as non-signatories of the Main Agreement. 

Johann Preiss | National Collective Bargaining Co-ordinator
Consolidated Employers Organisation
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Tel. 083 277 1736

About CEO | Consolidated Employers Organisation

Registered in 1998, CEO is a dynamic employers’ organisation providing representation for employers in labour disputes in diverse labour forums as well as collective or sectoral bargaining in various industries and bargaining councils. CEO has a national footprint of offices and a membership base of over 20,000 employers, including private and public entities, from SMMEs (Small, Medium and Micro-Sized Enterprises) to large businesses across South Africa.

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