Solidarity today announced that the Safety and Security Sectoral Bargaining Council (SSSBC) ruled in its favour in the matter in which Solidarity represented Col Ivan Myers of the K9 Unit in Cape Town.
This comes after Myers had been suspended unlawfully and without compensation because he had refused to obey orders which would have made him guilty of animal cruelty.
“Myers has been the unit’s commander for the past 19 years and is an accredited patrol dog handler. Solidarity filed a dispute over unfair labour practice about the disciplinary steps that had been taken when Myers was suspended for a period of one month without pay on the basis of a number of complaints relating to his refusal to redeploy old and sickly dogs for operational purposes,” Ettienne Pio, litigant at Solidarity’s Bellville office, said.
In terms of the ruling, Myers’s decision to withdraw the dogs from service was justified and reasonable and it was clear from their medical reports that all the dogs were eventually “withdrawn” because of their age and medical conditions associated with age.
According to Pio, Myers repeatedly raised concerns with the SAPS at the start of 2018 about the state of seven dogs that were no longer fit for service. This is not the first time that Myers has put his career at risk for the sake of his dogs. These complaints are just an example of the many occupational disadvantages he has been subjected to,” Pio said.
He was acquitted in an internal disciplinary hearing and the chairperson found that the complaints levelled against Myers could be the result of malicious and vengeful actions of the complainant.
According to Pio, Myers must be commended for being willing to stand up for dogs that have served the SAPS loyally all their lives.