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TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGYFOR SOUTH AFRICAA DISCUSSION DOCUMENTOCTOBER 20081

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENTTOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGYEXECUTIVE SUMMARY4TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY11INTRODUCTION11ANTI-POVERTY FRAMEWORK13DEFINING POVERTYTHE PILLARS OF THE FRAMEWORK FOR POVERTY REDUCTIONSTRATEGIC OBJECTIVES OF THE ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGYSTRATEGIC FOCUS AREASBUILDING ON EXISTING POLICY AND PROGRAMMESCHANGING THE TRAJECTORYBUILDING A PARTNERSHIPECONOMIC POLICYSOCIAL POLICYSUSTAINABLE POVERTY ERADICATIONGOOD GOVERNANCEINSTITUTIONALISING SOLIDARITY131314151516181819192020AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY21THE NATURE AND SCALE OF POVERTY21PROGRESS IN FIGHTING POVERTY24PILLAR ONE: CREATION OF ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIESPILLAR TWO: INVESTMENT IN HUMAN CAPITALPILLAR THREE: BASIC INCOME SECURITYPILLAR FOUR: HOUSEHOLD SERVICES AND HOUSINGPILLAR FIVE – COMPREHENSIVE HEALTHCAREPILLAR SIX: ACCESS TO ASSETSPILLAR SEVEN: SOCIAL COHESION AND SOCIAL CAPITALPILLAR EIGHT: GOOD GOVERNANCE2529333539414244REFLECTIONS ON CURRENT INITIATIVES46KEY STRATEGIES TO ADDRESS POVERTY47TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT2

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENTWHO IS POOR?48TARGETING THOSE IN NEED49KEY STRATEGIESTHE ROLE OF ECONOMIC POLICYECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN GENERALECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN RURAL AND POORER AREASEMPLOYMENT CREATIONTHE ROLE OF SOCIAL POLICYADDRESSING CHILD POVERTYHUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT – EDUCATIONEDUCATION AND CHILD POVERTYEDUCATION AND RURAL POVERTYEDUCATION AND TRAININGPROVISION OF HEALTH CAREMEETING BASIC NEEDS – PROVISION OF BASIC SERVICESESTABLISH TARGETED SUPPORT SYSTEM FOR THE POOR HOUSEHOLDSCOMMUNITY EMPOWERMENT PARADIGMSOCIAL COHESION49515154565757585859606364646566INSTITUTIONALISING SOLIDARITY68IN THE STATETHE PRIVATE SECTOR AND CIVIL SOCIETYCOMMUNITY MOBILISATIONONE-STOP DELIVERYTHE NEXT STEPS6868697071TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT3

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENTTOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGYEXECUTIVE SUMMARYDefining povertyPoverty is understood as deficiency in an individual’s socio-economic capabilities. Itsmanifestations include factors such as income, access to basic services, access toassets, information, social networks or social capital. This broad approach to povertyallows for engagement with the reality of poverty and the combination of things thatshould be done to deal with it.Overall strategic objectivesThe overall objective of this strategy is to eradicate poverty. At the centre of the fightagainst poverty: creation of economic opportunities and enabling or empoweringcommunities and individuals to access these opportunities. Providing a safety netin the form of social assistance and provision of basic services continues to be critical inour efforts, but we also seek to empower individuals and communities to supportthemselves. The strategy builds on the work of the years since the dawn of ourdemocracy. It also seeks to change the trajectory of our anti-poverty initiatives. As we goforward we need to strengthen our resolve to reduce the incidence of poverty as well asto prevent the reproduction of poverty within households and communities.Central to this resolve is the ending of intergenerational poverty through improving theeconomic situation of households. Critical elements to this end would include: maintaining overall economic growth, including through substantial investment ineconomic infrastructure as well as appropriate fiscal and monetary policies targetinggovernmentsupportatmeasuresthatwillcreateeconomicopportunities on a mass scale for the historically marginalised, including throughland reform and agrarian development; support for growth in sustainable, labourintensive formal activities, and a substantial expansion in public employmentschemes, andTOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT4

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT instituting measures to enhance the incomes in cash and kind earned frominformal activities, the bulk of which take place in agriculture, retail and services.,To this effect human resource development, in particular education and skillsdevelopment, will play a significant role in preventing the intergenerational transmissionof poverty. An economy that creates jobs including self-employment opportunities andthe ability of a country to improve the educational outcomes, skills and aspirations ofchildren and young people are the most important factors in breaking generationalcycles poverty.A focus on rural development and agricultural support for families is also at thecentre of the anti-poverty strategy. About half of poor people reside in rural areas, whereeconomic opportunities are limited. Reinforced interventions are required to transformthe situation of the people in rural areas, in line with the National Spatial DevelopmentPerspective1.Furthermore the strategy aims to reinforce partnership at all levels among governmentdepartments and agencies, business, organised labour and other civil society and nongovernmental organisations. Within government, over and above the current initiatives,it is about doing some things, differently as well as emphasising implementation andcoordination. The current initiatives to combat poverty rely heavily on governmentsponsored and administered programmes and projects. Whereas the government has acentral role to play, it should also focus on facilitating the involvement of otherinstitutions, providing political leadership and using its resources and other capacities tomobilise all the role players in the desired direction. Indeed this is the “government’svision for the developmental state, one where public institutions together with othereconomic actors work in a coordinated way to address poverty and underdevelopmentand promote higher and more widely shared, economic growth.” (Policy brief,Competition Commission)1TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT5

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENTKey strategies to address povertyCritical interventions that should receive the highest level of attention from governmentin addressing poverty (while improving all the others), are: economic interventions to expand opportunities for employment and self-employmentin particular including improvement of the state’s capacity to lead in job-creatingindustrial development. provision of quality education and skills and health care especially to poorcommunities; and promotion of access to assets including social capital to the poor and reduction ofvulnerability promoting social cohesionIn line with the multidimensional nature of poverty, the anti-poverty framework isanchored on the nine pillars listed below.1. Creation of economic opportunities – aimed at ensuring that the economy generatesopportunities for poor households to earn improved incomes through jobs or selfemployment.2. Investment in human capital – providing health care, education and training neededto engage with the economy and in political processes.3. Income security – providing safety nets for the most vulnerable, primarily throughsocial grants. This to ensure that vulnerability associated with disability, age andillness does not plunge poor households into destitution.4. Basic services and other non-financial transfers – what has been termed a socialwage, consisting of services such as subsidised housing, and expanded access towater, electricity, refuse removal and sanitation; as well as a raft of minimum freebasic services for vulnerable sectors of the population. Inability to pay for basicservices should not prevent the poor from accessing these services altogether.5. Improving healthcare – ensuring that poor children grow up healthy, providing qualityand efficient preventative and curative care, and ensuring that illness or disability donot plunge poor households into destitution.TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT6

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT6. Access to assets – particularly housing, land and capital, including publicinfrastructure, both to improve economic and social security and to provide the basisfor economic engagement in the longer run.7. Social inclusion and social capital initiatives – combining programmes to ensure amore inclusive and integrated society, based on the development of more integratedstructures and engagements across class and race, as well as community solidarityin communities and society as a whole. The focus is also on strengthening socialcapital, especially for the poor to expand their networks and ensure they haveaccess to information.8. Environmental sustainability – requiring strategies and programmes that help linkincreasing economic opportunities for the poor to the protection and rehabilitation ofecosystems, reversing environmental degradation and promoting eco tourism.9. Good governance – direct intervention in the provision of information, facilitatingparticipatory, pro-poor policies and sound macroeconomic management. This is toensure proper use of public funds, encouraging shared economic growth, promotingeffective and efficient delivery of public services and consolidating the rule of law.Targeting the poorWhereas poverty may affect a wide range of people in different circumstances, the mostvulnerable groups are Older people – despite the broad coverage and reach of state old pension, incomeat old age is still limited. In many households, the state old pension support is erodedby dependency of unemployed able-bodied members of the households. Inadequateincome and declining health status means they are predisposed to poverty. The unemployed, especially the youth who comprise a significant majority of theunemployed and have low levels of education – the major cause of poverty for themajority is lack of earned income due to unemployment. Children, especially those who grow up in poor families. Social assistance effortshave to be reinforced, and we have to ensure that children access education toenable them to escape the poverty trap.TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT7

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT Women – especially single parents and particularly black women are vulnerable topoverty because they both face persistent gender discrimination and generally haveextensive care-giving responsibilities. Critical support areas include expansion ofECD, provision of basic household infrastructure such as running water andelectricity at an affordable cost, and improved access to training and economicopportunities. People with disability – disability is associated with difficulties of physical access,high living costs, low incomes and problems of social exclusion. It has major effectson employability. Social assistance is essential to provide a safety net for them. People living in poor areas – poverty still reflects apartheid settlement patterns.Most of the poor households are found in the former Bantustan regions, informalsettlements and historically black townships. Therefore improving economicopportunities in these areas is critical.Community empowerment paradigmPoverty eradication initiatives should have, as a central tenet the empowerment ofcommunities. Processes such as community/ward-based planning linked to municipalIDPs have great potential in giving communities greater control and ensuring a balancein the expectations for change between government’s role as ‘deliverer’ andcommunities as driver. These processes can be unleashed with better support andresourcing focussing on ward-based implementation ideally with growing communitycontrol over resource-allocation for anti-poverty efforts.Institutionalising solidarityThe effective implementation of anti-poverty programmes requires stronger institutions inthe State, the private sector and civil society, and in poor communities themselves. in the StateWe need to ensure that anti-poverty programmes are a top priority for all departments –social, economic and otherwise – and for all spheres of government. To that end, ThePresidency should be made responsible for championing anti-poverty efforts, including:TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT8

TOWARDS AN ANTI-POVERTY STRATEGY FOR SA- DISCUSSION DOCUMENT co-ordinating and monitoring efforts by economic, social and other departments aswell as all spheres of government working with civil society and the private sector to strengthen, monitor andsupplement anti-poverty programmes. in the private sector and civil societyThe struggle against poverty requires involvement , not only of the State, but also ofbusiness, NGOs, students and others. This support can take several forms, such asmentoring new businesses or community organisations, volunteering in poorcommunities, assisting organisations representing the poor or providing funds.Government will develop an explicit strategy for working with existing structures toprioritise the elimination of poverty, encourage concrete commitments outside of theState and get feedback on programmes. This strategy should include proposals aroundthe National Economic Development and Labour Council, the Presidential consultativegroups and other structures in business, labour and civil society. Government willconsider establishing a high-level council comprising major stakeholders to advise onand help monitor and implement the Anti-Poverty Strategy. community mobilisationEffective community mobilisation requires the emergence of competent and inclusivecommunity groups that can: work with government to identify viable and desirable interventions drive implementation in their communities ensure that the interventions/programmes benefit the poorest households. one-stop deliveryGovernment is developing a comprehensive data system that will permit theidentification of

towards an anti-poverty strategy for sa- discussion document 5 • instituting measures to enhance the incomes in cash and kind earned from informal activities, the bulk of which take place in agriculture, retail and services.,

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