What is AFAAL?
Law Proposal to Establish “Afa’al” Program to Eliminate Poverty and Extreme Destitution in Lebanon
Amendment Proposal on the Amendment of the Finance and Budget’s Sub Committee
Amendment of article 2 of the law n°. 327 of 18/5/1994 (amending certain provisions of law n°. 212 related to the Ministry of Social Affairs) and replaced it by the following text:
All articles in force at the date of effectiveness of this law shall continue to be applied in the Directorate General of Social Affairs; as well as all effective regulations regarding: social healthcare centers and development services centers stemming directly from the Ministry of Social Affairs including social healthcare center; social training center; pilot centers for the disabled; joint projects with the international and national organizations; the Lebanese Professional house; and the National Program for Supporting the Poorest Families.
The financial assets of these centers and projects, as well as their amendments, shall be regulated by a decree issued by the Minister of Social Affairs. However, the National Program for Supporting the Poorest Families is considered an exception as the assets, management and human resources mechanisms are regulated by a cabinet approved decree upon the proposal of Minister of Social Affairs, noting that the staffing process is through a competition directed by the civil service board.
Contributions provided in the framework of the National Program for Supporting Lebanese Families living under the extreme poverty line with conditional cash assistance fall under “Afa’al”. Eligible families, whose number shouldn’t exceed 10% of residing Lebanese, can benefit from one or more of the following programs:
1- Conditional cash assistance
2- Supporting programs
3- Other social services
Each beneficiary, may he/she be an individual or breadwinner or in case of disability whoever substitute for, receives monthly cash assistance unwaived and not subject to custody. This assistance is worth one third of the minimum wage per capita or for a family composed of parents and a maximum of 3 children, with an increase of 11% of the minimum wage for each additional child. The program highlights the need for the full yearly conditional cash assistance budget forecasted in the Ministry of Social Affairs’ budget.
In order to provide this conditional cash assistance, the beneficiary should commit to the below:
1- Providing roof of enrolment and educational attainment of minor children, if any.
2- Attending vocational training courses that qualify the beneficiary to find a job opportunity; if not successful, the training will qualify one of the depending family members. If this condition is not applicable due to illness or disability, cash assistance will still be provided.
The program encourages women to attend vocational training courses, if capable, empowering them to find a job opportunity.
In terms of “conditional cash assistance” this program relies on the Lebanese government’s funding by forecasting the necessary allocations in the Ministry of Social Affairs’ budget. In terms of “supporting programs” and “other social services”, this program calls on the Lebanese government and international donors and organizations’ funding, in addition to private sector’s funding within the social responsibility of corporates and individuals.
Based on a cabinet approved decree upon the proposal of Minister of Social Affairs noting the overall cost, article 2 stipulates the conditions to be met by the beneficiary, the obligations determined, and the procedure for conditional cash assistance. It is important that the allocations for the program be mentioned in one of the Ministry of Social Affairs’ budget articles.
The abovementioned program is subject to the supervision of the central inspection. In addition, the council of ministers can assign international authority or an auditing firm or experts to scrutinize the beneficiaries’ list and the National Program for Supporting the Poorest Families’ data.
The minutes of this law’s implementation are determined by cabinet decrees upon Minister of Social Affairs’ proposal.
This law enters into force once published in the official journal.