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Committee reports of the Taylor Committee into a social security system for South Africa.

Committee Report No 8: Poverty, Social Assistance and the Basic Income Grant
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Table of contents

8.1. Introduction
8.2. How poor is South Africa?
8.3. Measures to combat asset and capability poverty
  8.3.1. Housing
  8.3.2. Land
  8.3.3. Food and Nutrition
8.4. Water and Sanitation
  8.4.1. Consolidated Municipal Infrastructure Programme (CMIP)
  8.4.2. Community Water Supply and Sanitation Programme
  8.4.3. Free Basic Water Services
8.5. Electricity
  8.5.1. Electricity Basic Support Services Tariff Strategy (EBSST)
8.6. Social Welfare Services
  8.6.1. Services to Older Persons
  8.6.2. Services rendered to children and families
8.7. Legal Aid
  8.7.1. Eligibility
8.8. Access to credit
8.9. Access to Education for learners with special needs
  8.9.1. Education of learners with special education needs
8.10. Access to Transport
  8.10.1. Transport for people with special needs
  8.10.2. Taxi Recapitalisation Programme
  8.10.3. Rural Infrastructure Strategy
8.11. Special projects for poverty relief, infrastructure investment and job summit projects
  8.11.1. Community Based Public Works Programme (CBPWP)
  8.11.2. Skills Development Strategy
  8.11.3. Problems with poverty relief funds
8.12. Findings on current Government measures to address asset and capability poverty
8.13. Poverty measures: Requirement to target social policy
  8.13.1. Other Government programmes on poverty
  8.13.2. Need for Government co-ordination and capacity for implementation
8.14. South Africa’s social assistance system: Addressing income poverty
  8.14.1. An overview of the social assistance system
  8.14.2. The micro-simulation model
  8.14.3. Household structure and social security reform
  8.14.4. Parental care and household structure
  8.14.5. The household structure and poverty
  8.14.6. The impact of the current social assistance system
  8.14.7. Findings
8.15. Social security take-up and the means test
  8.15.1. An assessment of the potential of full take-up
  8.15.2. An assessment of the means test
  8.15.3. Findings
  8.15.4. Recommendations
8.16. A targeted unemployment grant or dole
  8.16.1. Critique of proposed system
  8.16.2. Recommendation
8.17. The feasibility of a basic income grant for South Africa
  8.17.1. What is a Basic Income Grant?
  8.17.2. Will the Basic Income Grant Create Dependency?
  8.17.3. Will the Basic Income Grant Target the Poorest?
  8.17.4. Are There Efficiencies in Administration?
  8.17.5. The Impact of a Basic Income Grant
  8.17.6. Conclusions
  8.17.7. Economic impact of a Basic Income Grant
  8.17.8. Social capital
8.17. The feasibility of a basic income grant for South Africa
8.18. Malnutrition and Health
8.19. Education
8.20. Poverty, Inequality and Social Instability: Development Implications
8.21. Labour market effects
  8.21.1. Raising labour supply
  8.21.2. Labour demand
8.22. The financial feasibility of a Basic Income Grant
  8.22.1. Introduction
  8.22.2. Findings on Basic Income Grant
  8.22.3. Recommendations
8.23. Financial Arrangements and Options
  8.23.1. Policy options and assumptions
  8.23.2. Fiscal capacity assumptions
  8.23.3. Fiscal Implications—findings
8.24. Conclusions
  REFERENCES - 34Kb < 1min (6 pages)
  ENDNOTES - 20Kb < 1min (3 pages)

8.1 Introduction

The Committee paid significant attention to the urgent problem of poverty and its impacts on South African society. Moreover, through the process of public hearings, consultations with representative groups, submissions and commissioned research the Committee has considered existing and proposed measures to alleviate poverty.

This chapter is divided into five major sections. The first section reviews the state of poverty in South Africa. The current approach to poverty and vulnerability is examined. Significant measures under way to address poverty are reviewed against their stated policy objectives. Recommendations on what benchmarks and processes must be put into place to enable government to systematically address poverty through social protection measures are indicated. In addition recommendations are made on the need for and processes of monitoring and evaluation that must be put into place.

The second section evaluates the impact of the existing system of social assistance cash transfers on poverty in South Africa. It provides an analysis of the categories of people in receipt of social assistance, the gaps in coverage and some of the major problems within the existing system. Issues related to targeting, means testing, dependency and perverse incentives are examined. Recommendations on the current arrangements are made.

The third section provides an analysis of effective ways of targeting those who are currently outside the social safety net and evaluates the means test within the context of social security take-up rates. The fourth evaluates the impact of a basic income grant, assessing its role in reducing poverty. The social and developmental impact of the grant, focusing on social investment, labour markets, and macro-economic considerations as well as the fiscal impact is evaluated.

[Table of contents]

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