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23 October 2009

Child support grant extended

Cabinet's decision to approve the extension of the Child Support Grant from 15 to 18 years has been given a warm reception.

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The Black Sash, the Alliance for Children's Entitlement to Social Security (ACESS) and the Children's Institute (UCT) welcomed Cabinet's decision to approve the extension of the Child Support Grant (CSG) from 15 to 18 years.

The grant extension is seen as an important, high-level, political commitment which responds to more than 10 years of campaigning by civil society. It is also seen as a significant step towards realising the Constitutional rights of all children to social assistance.

”We are particularly pleased that today's announcement is accompanied by a commitment to begin the rollout of the grant in January next year (2010) as well as the necessary budget calculations. We urge government to ensure that regulations and systems are in place to effect a smooth transition,” they said.

”The testimonies that we gathered at hearings around the country clearly showed that the Child Support Grant contributes significantly towards reducing child poverty and is linked to a decrease in child hunger and child labour, and an increase in school attendance. The report we were due to present to Parliament next week was entitled, 'When the grant stops, the hope stops'."

”Today, hope has been restored to millions of poor and vulnerable families throughout South Africa.” – (Press release, October 2009)

 
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