Civil Group Unhappy With Latest R350 Grant Change


It is expected that more people will benefit from the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant after several amendments were made to the regulations under which the grant is provided.




The Minister of Social Development Lindiwe Zulu gazetted changes to the Social Assistance Act which sets out new qualifying criteria for the Social Relief of Distress (SRD) grant.

There are now several changes to the qualifying criteria for the SRD grant such as the removal of bank verification as the main criteria for determining eligibility and the removal of the requirement for beneficiaries to answer questionnaires every three months to demonstrate their need for the grant.

Another crucial change was the lifting of the income threshold from R350 to R624. In terms of the SRD grant, income refers to any money detected in an applicant's bank account. The income threshold refers to the maximum amount of money a person is allowed to have in their bank account and still qualify for the SRD grant.

Melanie McKernan from Pay the Grants believes that many people could still lose out on receiving the grant if their bank accounts are monitored.

They explained that some individuals obtain loans from family members while others sell their belongings while they wait for their grant payment. If this money is detected in their bank account and it exceeds the income threshold of R624, they will be rejected from receiving the R350 grant.

This is a big big problem and this R624 increase in the threshold is not going to mean anything if that second bank verification issue is still in place

McKernan said the introduction of a requirement for beneficiaries to answer questionnaires every few months was unnecessary, to begin with. This as it was not originally in place since the inception of the grant.

They also called on the South African Social Security Agency and The Department of Social Development to improve communication with grant beneficiaries. This is because many rely on second-hand information to get their grant.





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