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Here’s what the "Black tax" does to so many families — including mine

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Black Tax

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What is Black tax

Black tax is a South African term that refers to money black professionals give to their families each month, usually as an obligation, in addition to their own living expenses. The cause is persistent economic imbalances that can be traced back to apartheid and slavery.

Black tax refers to the financial burden on people of color who have moderately successful, but who support families that are not financially stable. These cash transfers are usually made between middle class and wealthy black people and their relatives who are struggling to make ends meet.

Is Black tax a burden or ubuntu?

A secret affliction for some and a proud responsibility for others, the "black tax" is a daily reality for thousands of black South Africans. There is nothing wrong with providing for your family more especially if you are in a position where you are able to. Being a young black South African who is educated and who is able to get employment after school is a true blessing to most families.

With the current situation of our economy where unemployment is constantly rising. Having a job is a gift to most families. Each young employee has a mandate to give something back at home. No matter how big or small it is.

Ubuntu is a Nguni Bantu term meaning "humanity". It is sometimes translated as "I am because we are" (also "I am because you are"), or "humanity towards others" (Zulu umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu). Meaning when you are in a better financial position sharing with your family members particular your parents can be seen as a noble action.

There should always be a balance. Don't now carry your family financial needs above your own financial goals.

Should you include black tax in you budget?

If the black tax is not properly managed, it can easily become a vicious cycle that negatively affects household finances. Giving someone financial support can limit their ability to become financially independent and stable, but they're still family so they pay the black tax, right? Balance financial freedom with family commitments can be difficult. It's difficult, but not impossible.

Here are five tips to help you and your family achieve that balance.

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Burden or uBuntu?

Honesty is the best policy

Open and honest communication about expectations is key to successfully managing black taxes and other financial aid. Discussing your needs and luxuries, and what you want to offer and don't want to offer, is essential to protecting your hard-earned money and family relationships. It also helps reject requests that don't fit within the limits you set.

Set goals and deadlines

Perhaps you are providing financial assistance to help a family member complete their education. set. Be specific about the amount you can offer and for how long. Discuss your level of engagement and expected results. Life happens sometimes and it's your family, so don't be overly strict and hold each other accountable for the details!

Prepare for the unexpected

As a family caregiver, it's important to be prepared for the unexpected. Build an emergency fund to protect yourself and your family from unemployment, illness, and more. The last thing you want when faced with an emergency or unforeseen event is the pressure of needing extra money and not having it. enable families to become financially independent

It's good to remember that the long-term goal of providing financial assistance is to help the recipient become financially independent. Being financially dependent on someone for a long time can be a slippery slope and a comfort zone for some. Instill financial independence and resilience in those you help by sharing valuable articles and providing access to expert financial advice.

Establish some ground rules

Setting ground rules and expectations can help keep the peace in a financial aid situation. People tend to play better when they know what is expected of them. So communicate your commitments, expectations and your role within them. Financial assistance must not be at the backer's expense. Also, the person receiving assistance must not engage in financially demanding purposes or live beyond their means without your consent. Everyone contributes!

Put yourself and your finances first

If your financial situation is unhealthy, there is nothing you can do to help yourself and your family. You cannot pour from an empty cup. Our expert financial advice can help you position yourself financially by saving for your future. In this way, you can remain financially independent and stable for the benefit of all involved. Establishing and implementing sound financial habits and principles in your life will ensure that your family benefits from your financial prosperity.

If your financial capacity allows you to, then you can add it to your budget. Black tax is a responsibility rather than a burden and should be treated as a privilege more especially with understanding our economic background as a country.

The Advantages of Black tax in the South African Families

While many see the black tax as a personal burden, it also plays an important socio-economic role. Lift families out of poverty, strengthen communities and create lasting wealth.

For example if every older sibling that is in a much better financial position makes sure that a younger sibling (sister or brother) gets a stable quality of education. That that would black empowerment and excellence. Which in return improves the quality of life for the entire family.

The Disadvantage of The Black tax

Knowing that your aunt, who raised you for most of your teenage life, may not have the money to buy a loaf of bread creates a certain anxiety. Or, if you're inundated with "call me, I need cash" text messages from close cousins ​​who have previously stated why they need cash, R35 for 15 minutes at an internet café to submit an application but no longer cares about giving you the details.

Black Tax becomes a problem if it is unmonitored and there is no communication of expectations between the family members. It become unhealthy when the giver cannot prioritize and achieve their own financial goals.

There is s much pressure that comes with black tax. As a young professional you sometimes feel the pressure to succeed in your industry while equally carrying the load of expectations from your family members. This can sometimes lead to stress and anxiety which could negatively affect your wellbeing more especially where there are no limits.

How to avoid black tax

You cannot avoid black tax but you can control it. More especially if you family can not make ends meet . Open communication is the best answer. Giving a little bit back at home gives you a sense of pride, knowing that you also helping out. I believe black tax should be something that we embrace and it should not be by force but it should always come from a good place.

That is why including black tax in your budget would give you peace of mind.

Are all Black families impacted by the Black tax?

In modern South Africa not all families are impacted by the black tax. There are indeed families that provide for their young professionals. But this is a only a minority of black families. The majority is of families are affected by black tax.

Studies show that 75% of black families are impacted by black tax in South Africa.

Is South Africa Helped By Government ?

Government has initiatives that are in place to assist families that are living below the breadline. South Africa has five main social security subsidies. National old-age pensions, disability benefits, child benefits, foster child benefits, nursing care benefits. Eligibility for each scholarship is subject to an income-based means test.

Subsidies are funded by general tax revenues collected on a country-by-country basis. amount paid While reporting on children, there has been a substantial increase since 2001.

The support grant was extended from all children under the age of 7 to all children under the age of 14.

Grants are implemented and administered by a government agency in another country. South African Social Security Agency. About 7 million South African in 2003 received one of these grants, out of a total population of 45 million Africans. Total expenditure in 2004/05 was 41 billion ZAR (approximately US$7 billion) 10.2% of total government spending, 3.1% of GDP.

The Gap in our Finance Industry

Chat and Pay is specifically designed for the working class and young professionals who are directly and indirectly impacted by black tax. Chat and Pay allows you to have control over your money while it connects your cash and the digital world.

Simplify your business transactions with Chat and Pay solution by Glow

Generate invoices and get paid seamlessly right on WhatsApp

Join the waitlist and be the first to be notified when we launch.


Boundaries are the ultimate answer to black tax. You now understand what black tax is in South Africa. The difference between Ubuntu and a burden has been outlined. Ways to mange black tax have been given. The advantages and disadvantages of black tax have been given. The role played by government to help families in need has been highlighted. We also touched on the role of the Chat and Pay. Join the waitlist and be part of the 100 South Africans who are eager to get their hand on the glow app.



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