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Articles in Category: PACSA and Partners in the Media



A National Minimum Wage of R3 500 is too low and could trap millions of workers in continuing cycles of poverty

The low proposed National Minimum Wage of R3 500 per month is not enough for workers to support their families, nor does it address our historical racial wage structure. After this figure has been legislated, we suspect that it will institutionalise South Africa’s low-wage trajectory and deepen income inequality.  Read the Media Statement here

Basic food prices increase month by month: survey

The price of food continues to soar, with a basket of essential goods increasing by R301 in the past year. This is according to social justice NGO, Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action (Pacsa), which tracks the monthly food inflation on 36 basic food items. The latest food price barometer was released on Thursday by the agency. For basic food items bought mostly by lower-income households, the food basket increased by R26.46 (1.4%) from June to July. “Year-on-year the Pacsa food basket increased by R301.46 (18.7%) from R1 612.83 in July 2015 to R1 914.29 in July 2016,” Mervyn Abrahams, director of Pacsa, said. Read the article here: http://www.iol.co.za/dailynews/news/basic-food-prices-increase-month-by-month-survey-2058846

This is how much it now costs to feed a family of 5 in South Africa

The Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action (Pacsa) has released its monthly food price barometer for August 2016, showing that the cost of a ‘minimum’ basket of food has hit its highest point to date. The Pacsa food price inflation basket tracks the affordability of food and other essential household requirements for working class households, in a context of low wages, social grants and high levels of unemployment. Read the full article here: http://businesstech.co.za/news/lifestyle/135555/this-is-how-much-it-costs-to-feed-a-family-of-5-in-south-africa/

Minimum wage of R8 000 decent, says social body

South Africa's national minimum wage should be set at R8 000 at least if households are to have the possibility of leading a dignified basic lifestyle, according to Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action (Pacsa). The organisation, which campaigns for social justice and human rights, recently published economic data which showed how black households in particular are falling deeper into poverty as wages fail to help them develop financial resilience.

Community Survey Millions unable to buy food in SA

Nearly 3.4 million South Africans ran out of money to buy food in the last 12 months. That’s the grim picture of food security in the country according to the latest data released by Statistics South Africa under the Community Survey 2016 report. The figures were released just a day after non-profit organisation PACSA released its latest food price barometer. The NGO tracks the price of more than 30 basic food items at stores serving largely the lower-middle income market. Its barometer shows a basket of food has decreased by R31.75 compared with the previous month. But the basket has increase by more than R20 over a three-month period. Read the full article here: http://www.enca.com/south-africa/millions-unable-to-buy-food-in-sa

SA leans on credit to maintain living standards

Middle-class South Africans are living beyond their means and edging closer to the breadline. "The fact that these households need to access credit to maintain living standards could be an indication that South Africans continue to live beyond their means."He added that it was also indicative of the country's struggle to "create wealth in a depressed economic environment". The Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action barometer - which measures food prices month by month - showed that the cost of a basic food basket had increased by 1.4% from R1887.83 in June to R1914.29 last month. Lamberti said in South Africa's current economic environment the main factors impending household cash flow was "particularly sticky inflation for non-discretionary goods such as food". Read the full article here: http://www.timeslive.co.za/thetimes/2016/08/24/SA-leans-on-credit-to-maintain-living-standards

Blighted crops take heavy toll on prices

Consumers are paying at least 14% more for a basket of food than a year ago after the worst drought in decades contributed to lower agricultural output, research shows. The price of staples such as a 25kg bag of maize meal has jumped 22.3% to R212.98 from R174.15 in June last year, the food basket barometer of the Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action shows.