UPDATE – March 4, 2022: Bill C-12 passed without amendment and received royal assent on March 3, 2022. This is an important victory for low-income seniors who have accessed temporary pandemic benefits and may need to continue to do so as the pandemic continues.
February 8, 2022
Today Bill C-12, An Act to amend the Old Age Security Act (Guaranteed Income Supplement), was introduced to the House. It proposes to exclude the Canada Emergency Recovery Benefit (CERB), the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB), the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB), the Canada Recovery Caregiver Benefit (CRCB) and Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit (CWLB) from calculation of the GIS starting in June 2022.
This is a massive win for working seniors who received temporary federal pandemic benefits. This Bill provides a solution going forward, and we applaud the government’s efforts to remedy the situation after months of lobbying by ISAC, members of the Ontario legal clinic system, seniors, and income security advocates across the country.
Right now, however, thousands of seniors who lost their GIS last summer are still living in limbo month-to-month, and are still waiting to hear about the $742.4 million fund proposed by the government in December 2021 intended to compensate them.
Seniors rely on monthly benefits like the GIS to pay their rent and bills, buy groceries, and fill prescriptions. The back payment of GIS benefits to seniors who have been without since last July must happen immediately.
Email your MP today to make sure that this fund is accessible for all who lost their GIS as soon as possible.
Find your MP here: https://www.ourcommons.ca/members