Mazhilis approved in the second reading the draft law on social protection of certain categories of citizens

The deputies of the Mazhilis of the Parliament of the Republic of Kazakhstan, having considered at the plenary session, approved in the second reading the draft law “On Amendments and Additions to Certain Legislative Acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan on Social Protection of Certain Categories of Citizens.”

This bill was developed as part of the implementation of the National Plan to ensure the rights and improve the quality of life of persons with disabilities until 2025 in order to improve legislation on social protection of certain categories of citizens, including such categories as persons with disabilities, families raising children with disabilities, veterans labor and others. The document provides for the introduction of an allowance for citizens caring for persons with disabilities of group I, regardless of the cause of the disability.

At present, out of 66 thousand people with disabilities of group I, every third person is not provided with either a care allowance or the services of an individual assistant. As a result of the adoption of the bill, care allowance will cover an additional 24 thousand people in need of constant outside care. Taking into account the degree of health disorders and disabilities of the child, the bill provides for the division of children aged 7 to 16 according to disability groups. This measure will make it possible to differentiate the provided rehabilitation measures and social assistance, including in terms of the amount of benefits, depending on the severity of the children’s illness. At the same time, the amount of benefits for all groups of disabled children will be increased from 16.7% to 37%.This measure will affect more than 30 thousand children with disabilities. Also, the draft law provides for the granting of the right to simultaneously receive benefits for disability and survivors. This will increase the income level of families who have lost their breadwinner and have children with disabilities.

Currently, children with disabilities can receive alimony and disability benefits at the same time if their parents divorced. However, upon the death of one or two parents (breadwinners), the child can receive either a disability benefit or a survivor benefit. With the introduction of this norm, 2 thousand children, on an equal basis with disability benefits (amount from 41,163 to 48,023 tenge), will be able to receive benefits in case of loss of breadwinner (amount from 12,063 to 29,500 tenge). Another novelty of the draft law is the provision of technical means (hereinafter referred to as TSR) and rehabilitation services at the expense of the state for persons who have received disability from work injury, if the employer is unable to fulfill the obligations. Currently, in the event of the termination of the activities of the employer – an individual entrepreneur or the liquidation of a legal entity, these obligations are transferred to the state. At the same time, disabled people are deprived of the opportunity to obtain a technical and technical support during the period of suspension (inaction) of the enterprise’s activities or during bankruptcy procedures, which can last up to 1.5 years. During this period, a person who has received a disability at work is left without technical means of rehabilitation.

This measure will allow timely coverage of up to 2 thousand people with technical means and rehabilitation services. Along with this, the document provides for the preservation of the right of families raising children with disabilities to be on the waiting list for housing after the child reaches the age of majority. In practice, such families are on the waiting list for housing for up to 10 years. If it is not possible to get housing before the child reaches 18 years of age, then the disabled person has to re-enter the queue. It is assumed that this norm will enable more than 20 thousand families to keep the priority for housing. In addition, within the framework of the bill, it is proposed to extend the period of caring for a disabled child up to 18 years, which will have a positive effect on the appointment of retirement benefits and a basic pension. It also provides for the transfer of a guaranteed social package for children from low-income families to the Social Services Portal.

Additionally, other norms are included, aimed at improving the efficiency and targeting of the provision of special social services. The adoption of the bill will have a positive impact on the system of social protection of the population and will improve the rights of about 400 thousand Kazakhstanis. The draft law is provided with the necessary funding in the amount of 55 billion tenge. Cost norms will be implemented within the allocated funds for 2021-2023.