Amendments to the Promotion of Quality and the Prevention of Discrimination Act 4 of 2000 (the PEPUDA) will have far-reaching consequences for all South Africans. It will also directly infringe on the rights of cultural and religious communities.

The Bill will have inter alia six important consequences:

  1. New definitions of equality and discrimination.
  2. Accountability will be implemented for unintentional actions or failure that affects a person’s dignity. Therefore, alleged perpetrators’ intentions will carry no weight – only the complainant’s allegations that they were discriminated against.
  3. People may be held accountable for violations of this Act that by their employees, workers or agents. This includes discrimination, hate speech and harassment.
  4. Non-governmental organisations, traditional leaders and institutions, as well as community organisations will be subject to a range of requirements. The executive authority will implement processes to regulate these requirements.
  5. The state will also review all acts, policies, practices and structures that do not comply with the newly-proposed definitions of equality and discrimination.
  6. The amendments will also require government to review all Acts, codes, structures and policy frameworks to align these with the new definitions of equality and discrimination.