Submission in response to the call for submissions by the South African Legal Reform Commission on its investigation to identify and repeal colonial and apartheid era legislations

Our submission highlights problematic municipal by-laws that have the effect of criminalising urban poverty, and entrenching discrimination and social-economic marginalisation. These laws are relevant to the SALRC’s call for submission on the basis that they:

  • have their origin in colonial and apartheid era legislation;
  • exist across the country and are apparent in the municipal by-laws of most, if not all, of South Africa’s major metros; and
  • violate constitutionally protected rights, and in particular:
    • equality and non-discrimination
    • dignity
    • freedom from arbitrary arrest and detention.
  • We recommend that the SALRC conduct an investigation into these by-laws, and make a proposal to government that they be repealed.
Year: 2020
Resource Type:
Petty Offences
Use of Public Spaces
South Africa
People Groups:
People in Detention
People experiencing Homelessness or live in informal settlements
Informal Workers
People experiencing Poverty
Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)
Policy Reform
Campaign Partner:
Africa Policing Civilian Oversight Forum