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Disability Cash Transfers in the Context of Poverty and Unemployment: the Case of South Africa

  • Sophie Mitra

    (Fordham University, Department of Economics)

South Africa's Disability Grant program has been widely criticized for its poor administration and the dependency culture it promotes. This paper attempts to assess the Disability Grant program's targeting effectiveness and its effects on labor market behaviors. Using disability self reports and standard measures of economic well being, results suggest that the Disability Grant is relatively well targeted. Exclusion and inclusion errors are substantial but are comparable to those found in developed countries' disability programs. Increased leniency in disability screening in the program in selected provinces does not appear to have altered labor market behaviors between 2001 and 2003.

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File URL: http://legacy.fordham.edu/images/academics/graduate_schools/gsas/economics/dp2009_08_mitra.pdf
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Paper provided by Fordham University, Department of Economics in its series Fordham Economics Discussion Paper Series with number dp2009-08.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:frd:wpaper:dp2009-08
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.fordham.edu/economics/
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  1. Anne Case & Angus Deaton, 1996. "Large Cash Transfers to the Elderly in South Africa," NBER Working Papers 5572, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Cally Ardington & Anne Case & Victoria Hosegood, 2007. "Labor Supply Responses To Large Social Transfers: Longitudinal Evidence From South Africa," Working Papers 1003, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
  3. Geeta G. Kingdon & John B. Knight, 2001. "Unemployment in South Africa: The nature of the beast," CSAE Working Paper Series 2001-15, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  4. Anne Case & Victoria Hosegood & Frances Lund, 2004. "The Reach and Impact of Child Support Grants: Evidence from KwaZulu-Natal," Working Papers 241, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing..
  5. Debra Sabatini Dwyer & Olivia S. Mitchell, 1998. "Health Problems as Determinants of Retirement: Are Self-Rated Measures Endogenous?," NBER Working Papers 6503, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Yeo, Rebecca & Moore, Karen, 2003. "Including Disabled People in Poverty Reduction Work: "Nothing About Us, Without Us"," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 571-590, March.
  7. Deon Filmer, 2008. "Disability, Poverty, and Schooling in Developing Countries: Results from 14 Household Surveys," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 22(1), pages 141-163, January.
  8. Bound, John & Burkhauser, Richard V., 1999. "Economic analysis of transfer programs targeted on people with disabilities," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 51, pages 3417-3528 Elsevier.
  9. Sophie Mitra, 2009. "Disability Screening and Labor Supply: Evidence from South Africa," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 512-16, May.
  10. Sophie Mitra, 2005. "Disability and Social Safety Nets in Developing Countries," World Bank Other Operational Studies 11783, The World Bank.
  11. Geeta Kingdon & John Knight, 2007. "Unemployment in South Africa, 1995--2003: Causes, Problems and Policies," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 16(5), pages 813-848, November.
  12. Brent Kreider, 1999. "Latent Work Disability and Reporting Bias," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(4), pages 734-769.
  13. David Lam & Murray Leibbrandt & Vimal Ranchhod, 2005. "Labour force withdrawal of the elderly in South Africa," SALDRU/CSSR Working Papers 118, Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit, University of Cape Town.
  14. Frikkie Booysen & Servaas Van Der Berg, 2005. "The Role Of Social Grants In Mitigating The Socio-Economic Impact Of Hiv/Aids In Two Free State Communities," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 73(s1), pages 545-563, December.
  15. Sophie Mitra & Usha Sambamoorthi, 2009. "Wage differential by disability status in an agrarian labour market in India," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(14), pages 1393-1398.
  16. Klasen, Stephan & Woolard, Ingrid, 2000. "Surviving Unemployment without State Support: Unemployment and Household Formation in South Africa," IZA Discussion Papers 237, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  17. Mitra, Sophie & Sambamoorthi, Usha, 2008. "Disability and the Rural Labor Market in India: Evidence for Males in Tamil Nadu," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(5), pages 934-952, May.
  18. Gruber, Jonathan & Kubik, Jeffrey D., 1997. "Disability insurance rejection rates and the labor supply of older workers," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 1-23, April.
  19. Johannes G. Hoogeveen, 2005. "Measuring Welfare for Small but Vulnerable Groups: Poverty and Disability in Uganda," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 14(4), pages 603-631, December.
  20. Standing Guy, 2008. "How Cash Transfers Promote the Case for Basic Income," Basic Income Studies, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-30, July.
  21. Sophie Mitra, 2008. "The Recent Decline in the Employment of Persons with Disabilities in South Africa, 1998-2006," Fordham Economics Discussion Paper Series dp2008-12, Fordham University, Department of Economics.
  22. Parsons, Donald O., 1996. "Imperfect 'tagging' in social insurance programs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(1-2), pages 183-207, October.
  23. Hugo Benitez-Silva & Moshe Buchinsky & John Rust, 2005. "How Large are the Classification Errors in the Social Security Disability Award Process?," Department of Economics Working Papers 05-02, Stony Brook University, Department of Economics.
  24. Coady, David P. & Grosh, Margaret & Hoddinott, John, 2002. "Targeting outcomes redux," FCND discussion papers 144, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  25. Robert Haveman & Barbara Wolfe, 1990. "The Economic Well-Being of the Disabled: 1962-84," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(1), pages 32-54.
  26. Jonathan Gruber, 2000. "Disability Insurance Benefits and Labor Supply," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(6), pages 1162-1183, December.
  27. Michele Campolieti, 2004. "Disability Insurance Benefits and Labor Supply: Some Additional Evidence," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(4), pages 863-890, October.
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