There’s been a lot of controversy and misleading information circulating as to whether or not ODSP recipients are entitled to this benefit. It’s important to clarify and be sure that anyone on ODSP that has earned at least $5,000 in 2019 or the past 12 month understands that they are absolutely entitled to this benefit, and that Ontario is treating it as they would employment income. This means that the first $200 is exempt and then every additional $1.00 you receive of CERB you will lose $0.50 of your social benefit payments. CERB payments are $2,000/month, which means you’d end up losing $900/month of ODSP benefits.
Todd Smith (Minister of Children, Community and Social Services) confirmed that you will continue to receive your health benefits and that no one will be kicked out of the system for exceeding income thresholds. You can also rest assured that no taxes are payable for CERB or other employment income until it exceeds the personal amount of $13,000.
CERB is a taxable benefit of $2,000/month ($500/week) for up to 16 weeks for workers who have stopped working due to COVID-19. Click here to apply for CERB
In other news, The Ministry of Children and Community Social Services (MCCSS) have made some temporary changes to Passport programs and Special Services at Home (SSAH) by expanding the list of eligible expenses to help support people and their families while community-based activities and settings are closed.
To make it easier for Passport and Special Services at Home recipients who receive this funding to take advantage of these changes quickly, they are also giving recipients 25% of their funding for 2020/21 in advance. Recipients who made an expense claim in 2019/20 will automatically receive their funding advance. Other recipients will need to call their local regional SSAH office or Passport Case Manager to receive advance funding.
ASCD (Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities) has also temporarily expanded their list of admissible expenses. Families who have already received pre-approval for expenditures may temporarily use pre-approved ACSD funding to purchase items or services from the expanded list without pre-approval from the ministry. If you are not already approved, contact your local regional office and ask for an application form.
You can read about other funding and relief measures we outlined in our previous email HERE.
We wish you all continued health and endurance during this difficult time.