Ontario Increasing Social Assistance Rates
Province Providing More Support for Ontario Works, ODSP Recipients
Ontario is increasing social assistance rates for people receiving support from Ontario Works and the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP).
This fall, new rate increases announced in the 2016 Budget come into effect, including an additional:
- $25 per month for single adults receiving Ontario Works
- 1.5 per cent for families receiving Ontario Works
- 1.5 per cent for individuals with disabilities who receive ODSP.
The rate increases come into effect in September 2016 for ODSP and in October 2016 for Ontario Works.
In addition, Ontario is increasing support for parents who receive income through the Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities program by 1.5 per cent.
The government has heard from stakeholders and partners about broadening discussions on social assistance reform to include aspects of the wider income security system. As a first step, the Income Security Reform Working Group is conducting a review of a variety of income supports, including social assistance. This work will support the development of a roadmap for an income security system based on fairness, adequacy and simplicity. Ontario is also developing a Basic Income pilot to test a different approach to income security.
Supporting people receiving income assistance is part of the government's economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario's history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.
- Social assistance provides support to more than 900,000 adults and children in Ontario every day.
- A single adult without children will receive $100 more per month through Ontario Works than they did in 2012. The government has raised rates in 12 out of the last 13 years.
- Since 2003, Ontario has increased social assistance rates by 20 per cent for families receiving Ontario Works and families and individuals with disabilities receiving ODSP, and by 33 per cent for single adults receiving Ontario Works.
- Ontario families receiving social assistance fully benefit from the new federal Canada Child Benefit (CCB), without any provincial ‘clawback’.
- In July 2016, low-income parents, including families with children receiving social assistance, saw the maximum Ontario Child Benefit (OCB) increase from $1,336 to $1,356 per child.
“By increasing rates, our government continues to make improvements to social assistance and provide support for people when they need it. At the same time, we know there is more work to be done, and through important initiatives like the Income Security Working Group and Basic Income pilot, we are working to create a modern income security system that moves beyond social assistance rates to a cross-government approach that places the person at the centre.”
Dr. Helena Jaczek