Lifeguards’ wage dispute closes metro’s pools

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Buffalo City Municipality (BCM) swimming pools are closed again after staff downed tools demanding a meeting with management over wages.

BCM pools are closed due to a staff dispute over wages Picture: RANDEL ROSKRUGE

This comes just two weeks after one of the metro’s biggest pool complexes opened its doors following a four-month closure for maintenance work during winter.

When the Saturday Dispatch visited Joan Harrison Swimming Pool Complex in Selborne and the Ruth Belonsky in Parkside yesterday, the gates and doors had been closed, with staff gathered inside.

While none of the lifeguards would speak to the Dispatch, it is understood that the pool lifeguards are demanding to be paid equal to beach lifeguards. They claim beach lifeguards are being paid R2000 more.

A number of galas, due to be held at both pools this week, have been postponed. Buffalo City Aquatics president Ian Schulein said they had been set back three months due to closures at Joan Harrison Swimming Complex which has affected their gala season.

BCM spokeswoman Bathandwa Diamond said: “Disciplinary action is being taken against the employees and a decision will be taken about a possible reopening after the situation has been reviewed. — oreillya@tisoblackstar.co.za

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