develop_region: 
Sub-Saharan Africa
iso2: 
ZA
iso3: 
ZAF
Continent: 
Africa
Official name: 
Republic of South Africa

Why is social protection vital to ensure that no person with a disability is left behind?

BlOG: Social protection programs (SPP), which provide cash transfers such as social pensions or child benefits, are coordinated by governments and donors. However, the payments are often outsourced to third-party payment service providers (PSPs), such as banks and MNOs. It’s these mechanisms which are often not designed with the inherent rights of the beneficiary in mind. In many cases, basic consumer protection principles, data protection rights and even the beneficiaries’ right to basic information aren’t being observed.

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Paternity leave regulations were signed into law in the Labour Laws Amendment Act in November 2018 by President Cyril Ramaphosa. He officially amended the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA) to include the new regulations. Now adoptive parents and commissioning parents are also entitled to ten weeks of unpaid adoption/commissioning parental leave or ten days of unpaid parental leave.

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The new system of collection of SASSA social grants via the post office, retailers and ATMs is arduous for pensioners, a new study has found. Sassa ended its contract with Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) in 2017 and signed a new contract with the South African Post Office to take over the system at the end of 2018.

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South Africa has a long history as a welfare state and since the end of the apartheid era in 1994, the social protection system has played a crucial role in combatting poverty and inequality. It is also the first African country to have introduced a social pension for older persons. The Older Person’s Grant (OPG) is provided to all people above 60 years of age and varies between ZAR1,500 ($112) and ZAR1,520 ($114).

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According to its 2011 Census, 2.87 million people in South Africa or 7.5 per cent of the population lives with a disability. It is one of the only countries in sub-Saharan Africa to provide an allowance for people with disabilities (PWDs). The Disability Grant (DG) is provided to adults over 18 years of age and is the only non-contributory allowance provided to persons of working age in the country.

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This publication presents country examples that document different pathways to achieve universal social protection coverage. These country cases encompass a wide range of programs, country settings and regions, including Sub-Saharan Africa (Botswana, Cabo Verde, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Zanzibar), Europe and Central Asia (Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kosovo and Ukraine), Latin America and Caribbean (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil and Trinidad and Tobago), East Asia and Pacific (China, Mongolia, Thailand and Timor-Leste), and South Asia Region (Maldives, Nepal).

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The ‘affordability’ of new or expanded social protection programmes depends on more than an assessment of the fiscal costs or the poverty-reducing or developmental benefits. Diverse international organisations have showed that programmes costing less than or about 1 percent of GDP have substantial benefits, and most low-income countries have the ‘fiscal space’ for such programmes (including through increased taxation).

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A systematic review and meta-analysis of 18 studies conducted in South Africa, Uganda, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia and Brazil has found that overall only 10 of 21 interventions showed a reduction in GBV or in GBV-related attitudes. The systematic review also found the overall quality of research to be poor.The World Health Organization estimates that one in three women will experience GBV in their lifetime.

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South Africa distributes 17 million social grants every month. These include child, disability and older person grants. Versions of this large social protection system exist elsewhere in the Global South, in countries like Brazil, Ethiopia and China.

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