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Bulletin - June 8, 2012

Ontario is integrating housing and homelessness support programs to better meet peoples’ needs.

As outlined in the 2012 Budget, the government is combining funding from social assistance programs and other sources to create an integrated program. Low-income earners and people in need will not have to be receiving social assistance in order to access these supports.

As part of the integration of programs, the government is ending the home repairs benefit. In addition, it will set up a new funding formula with municipalities to provide discretionary benefits for social assistance recipients.

None of these changes will affect the basic monthly amount an individual receives on social assistance. In fact, the government is raising Ontario Works and the Ontario Disability Support Program rates by one per cent in 2012 — a cumulative increase of 14.9 per cent since 2003.

The Ministry of Community and Social Services is also exploring how housing and homelessness related supports can be delivered in First Nations communities and will be engaging with First Nations partners in future.

Quick Facts

  • Applications for the Ontario Disability Support Program Home Repairs Benefit will be received up to June 30, 2012. The last day that payment can be made for approved home repairs will be Dec 31, 2012, unless there is an exceptional circumstance.
  • Half of the provincial Community Start Up and Maintenance Benefit funding will mean an additional $62.6 million to support the new consolidated program and will give municipalities more flexibility to address their local needs.
  • Discretionary benefits available through social assistance can pay for health-related costs like adult dental care and eyeglasses, as well as non-health related costs such as job training, moving expenses and travel. Municipalities will still have the flexibility to address such needs at the local level.

Learn More

Read the Ontario 2012 Budget.