Legislature hears more complaints about Saskatchewan Income Support

Legislature hears extra complaints about Saskatchewan Earnings Help

The Saskatchewan opposition joined a Saskatchewan Income Support (SIS) consumer Thursday to once more name on the provincial authorities to alter the social help program and improve its profit charges.

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Frank Francoeur is a father of two who transitioned to SIS from the Saskatchewan Help Program (SAP) final August,

Francouer, who says he went on social help after going via a divorce and in addition suffers from psychological well being issues, advised reporters he has much less cash to cowl fundamental prices of dwelling on the finish of the month on SIS than he did on SAP.

He provides he not too long ago acquired a discover of eviction at his Regina Housing Authority (RHA) dwelling and says each SIS and RHA practices are in charge.

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The Saskatchewan Housing Company, which oversees RHA, usually subsidizes housing for its purchasers by charging them 30 per cent of their family revenue.

For purchasers on welfare, nonetheless, this technique just isn’t used if that consumer is receiving extra money for shelter via a social help program similar to SIS or the previous SAP program.

Within the case of SIS, the Saskatchewan Housing Authority additionally takes into consideration “family prices” when setting hire ranges.

Within the case of Francoeur, who receives a $975 profit via SIS, this implies his hire elevated from $761 to $945 when he transitioned from SAP to SIS.

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He says there’s a distinction, although, in that SIS purchasers are anticipated to pay for utilities out of their shelter profit whereas SAP supplied a particular $40 utilities profit along with the shelter profit. On high of that, energy payments had been paid for immediately by social providers.

Whereas he has $30 left for utilities in his shelter profit, Francoeur says the facility payments for his household may be over $120, forcing him to dip into his $285 fundamental SIS profit to cowl the price.

All issues thought of, he says that whereas on SAP he would have $315 a month to spend on different dwelling prices after hire and utilities had been paid, he generally has lower than $200 a month to cowl fundamental dwelling prices on SIS.

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He mentioned that, particularly when inflation is taken into account, he typically finds himself scraping by.

“I instantly make my hire and electrical energy fee,” he mentioned.

“My food plan is spaghetti and rice. There’s journeys to the meals financial institution. Clothes, every little thing else has to die.”

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Whereas getting by on SIS has been a battle, Francoeur mentioned his eviction got here as a result of he was by no means advised his hire needed to improve by almost $200 when he transitioned from SAP to SIS.

He mentioned that was revealed to him throughout an annual hire renewal course of in March, and that he was advised he’d must pay the unpaid distinction. He mentioned he made an preliminary fee of $400 on that steadiness and that he requested if a fee association may very well be organized, however that RHA declined.

He mentioned that his hire fee for that month was routinely utilized in the direction of these arrears, and that in consequence he then defaulted on his subsequent hire fee.

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Social Companies Critic Meara Conway says tales like Francoeur’s are proof that SIS not solely wants increased profit charges, however that this system wants a definite utilities profit on high of the shelter and fundamental advantages.

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“It’s mind-boggling. It’s simply merciless,” she mentioned.

“We’re at some extent the place the charges are simply so low that we’re ripping aside the social cloth, like folks can’t stay on this.”

Social Companies Minister Lori Carr was not on the legislature Thursday, however former minister Donna Harpauer fielded reporter questions on the matter.

She defended the SIS program and its charges however declined to remark particularly on Francoeur’s scenario.

She mentioned, although, that officers from the federal government, which oversees the Regina Housing Authority, will meet with Francoeur to debate his case.

“There’s all the time purchasers, I do know from being the minister up to now, which have a change in circumstances, and should not perceive the change to this system that come ahead and that’s why the officers shall be assembly with them.”


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Help for high-needs Saskatchewan Earnings Help purchasers growing


Help for high-needs Saskatchewan Earnings Help purchasers growing – Nov 12, 2021

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