Sassa had introduced the R350 Social Relief Distress grant as its response to the Covid-19 pandemic. As the State of the Disaster has fallen away, a new regulation will be implemented for the grant.
Recently, Sassa has confirmed that it will be using the Social Assistance Act as the agent issues grants to recipients.
Civil societies have slammed the Department of Social Development (DSD) for its newly published regulations which will be governing applications and eligibility for the R350 grant.
The new regulations stipulate that current beneficiaries will need to reapply as well as changes to the qualifying criteria for the grant.
Experts have highlighted that fewer people will receive the relief. Civic society groups that are at the forefront of the discussions believe that the new SRD regulations may disqualify hundreds of thousands of existing beneficiaries.
As Social Policy Initiative Executive director, Isobel Frye described the state as reluctant and uncaring, when speaking on the new regulations.
In an interview, Social Policy Initiative Executive director, Isobel Frye said:
In terms of the attitude of the State, it is always setting up hurdles and obstacles that the most vulnerable have to negotiate.
According to the Act, a person may apply for the SRD grant if their income threshold is R350 per person per month, instead of the R595 it was before. This would mean that those who receive the Child Support Grant will no longer qualify.
According to Frye, women-headed households will be impacted and she also shared that there is just so much anxiety around this new regulation.
Applications on the Sassa website have opened and on the WhatsApp line, applications will open on 2 May 2022.