Sonke Gender Justice, the Treatment Action Campaign and SECTION27 welcome the Gauteng High Court’s approval of the settlement agreement in the Silicosis Class Action.
SECTION27 represented Sonke Gender Justice and the Treatment Action Campaign in the application to certify the class in the case in 2015, arguing in that case for the transmissibility of general damages, such as damages for pain and suffering, to the surviving family members (mostly women and children) of mine workers who died due to silicosis. The Court found in favour of this contention, recognising that to do otherwise would create a strong bias against women.
The settlement agreement makes provision for payment of damages to the widows and surviving families of mineworkers in a manner that is pragmatic and protects the interests of often poor and vulnerable women living in rural areas.
The settlement of this important case is a victory for mineworkers and their families and a step towards justice.
For further comment on the approval of the settlement agreement, please refer to the class representatives from the Legal Resources Centre, Richard Spoor Inc. and Abraham Kiewitz Inc.