What Social Consequences Of Economically Active People Who Are Unemployed In South Africa?


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Nicole Manion answered
South Africa has one of the highest unemployment levels in the world and this has increased exponentially in the post-apartheid years. The reasons for this are many and varied but the results are the same: Social deprivation and its consequences.

  • Poverty

Studies show that the numbers of people who are living in poverty in South Africa due to unemployment have not risen in any great way in recent years, but the level of poverty has. This means that the gap between, not just the rich and the poor, but those who can manage and those that cannot has widened. 

It is estimated that 57% of people in South Africa are below the threshold that is considered to be the poverty income line, but some areas are more affected by unemployment and the subsequent poverty than others. The Eastern Cape and Limpopo are the worst and hardest hit areas with up to 77% of the population living below the poverty line.

  • Crime

Unemployment impacts upon the crime levels anywhere, but in South Africa the levels of crime far exceed most other countries. In a survey, when expatriates were asked about their decision to leave, in most instances crime was cited as the main reason.

  • Other social consequences of unemployment in South Africa

The social consequences of unemployment are not exclusive to South Africa; all other countries suffer from the same kinds of deprivations and rising crime rates, but South Africa is a country that is still reacting to its history and so has more issues to contend with than other countries.

Unemployment repercussions, therefore, hit harder. Child poverty and the impact that has on education is massive, as is the future of these children when they have been brought up in less than ideal circumstances.

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