Advocate Carlo Viljoen is seeking an urgent interdict with the Cape High Court to allow hair salons and stylists to trade again.
Viljoen’s case is based on a hairdresser’s constitutional right to make a living, which they haven’t been able to do since the COVID-19 national lockdown.
It’s important to note that this court action does not involve the EOHCB (Employers Organisation for Hairdressing Cosmetology Beauty) and is separate from the EOHCB’s petitioning and interaction with government regarding the opening date for beauty, nail and hair salons.
Viljoen is being assisted by Jade Tomé of Tomé Distributors, a hair care distributor, who was interviewed by Azania Mosaka on Radio 702 on 19 May.
During the interview, Tomé said: “All hair salons, whether shop-based or home-based, were forced to close their doors on 27 March. It’s important to note that a large percentage of stylists work on a hand-to-mouth basis and do not have a savings plan to fall back on. Some of these stylists are taking measures, like selling retail hair products with CIPC certificates and selling home colour kits, while others are performing professional services behind closed doors and risking their careers in the process. We must remember that they only want to feed their families. Should this lockdown continue, 40% of salons could close down.”
Tomé pointed out that Viljoen is a human rights advocate and is seeking the court interdict in his private capacity, through discussions with legal advisors and panels. “We want the industry to open so that everyone can start earning a living again. It’s our constitutional right to be able to put food on the table.
“Carlo Viljoen will present an iron-clad case to the court and we know that we can prove to government that professional registered salons and stylists can uphold COVID-19 safety protocols. As an industry, we have always been focused on hygiene and sanitisation and are required by law to ensure the client’s health and safety. To keep the industry in lockdown is unfair and unjust – it’s something that we need to fight.”
Salon International contacted Viljoen and he hopes that the judgement will go his way, however, if not, the court needs to give reasons for rejecting it. If this happens, he will appeal and address the concerns of the court. Basically, Viljoen is contesting the rights of hairdressers to work in order to feed their families.
The hearing is scheduled for 10am on 27 May, we will keep you posted.