B.C. Ombudsperson Jay Chalke (Black Press files)

Former welfare clients still owed money, B.C. Ombudsperson says

Investigation found 2,600 people docked illegally for earning income

Almost 1,000 former income assistance recipients are still owed money nine months after an investigation found their income exemptions were unlawfully suspended, B.C. Ombudsperson Jay Chalke reported Thursday.

Chalke disclosed in May 2018 that the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction was unlawfully applying a one-month waiting period for the earnings exemption granted to people on welfare. The error applied to about 2,600 people, who were denied payments totalling $658,000, and 1,000 of them still haven’t been repaid, Chalke said in a follow-up report.

“I was extremely concerned when we made these initial findings,” Chalke said. “When government supports society’s most vulnerable citizens it is critical that benefits that can make a difference to making rent, caring for children or paying for basic transportation are administered properly.”

RELATED: B.C. changing orphan benefit policy for income assistance

RELATED: Inheritance, gift policy changed for disability assistance clients

Ministry policy has been changed to end the practice of suspending the earnings exemption, but as of this week some of the recipients are still owed payments totalling $225,000.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Crews continuing to clear rock north of Summerland

Site has had no movement for the past eight days

Kelowna developer makes an effort to help students left homeless after flood

U-Two developer is making an effort to help university students who were left in a lurch

Okanagan junior boys teams heading to basketball provincials.

The provincials invite 32 of the top junior teams in the province

Two accidents on Highway 97 near Vernon College

Emergency personnel have been called to two separate incidents on Highway 97 near Okanagan College

Music Rundown: Who you should be watching play live this week

Fill your calendar this week with these great shows

Girl heard saying ‘Help my Dad’ in suspicious radio message on Vancouver Island

Police asking for help following mysterious signals from somewhere between Comox and Sayward

Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

No treatment for highly infectious measles, says doctor

10 cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver as of Friday

Two more measles cases confirmed in Vancouver

It brings the number of total cases within the city connected to the outbreak to ten

No gas in Okanagan town as lone station closed for renovations

Falkland’s Petro Canada will remain closed for renovations until March 1

Shuswap facility adds 60 long-term care beds

Mount Ida Mews hosts grand opening of second phase in Salmon Arm

UPDATE: One dead after crash on Highway 97A near Armstrong

Police have confirmed that one person is dead following an accident on Highway 97A Friday

Most Read