The Old Age Security aid would be in addition to April’s GST aid

The April payment was an increase in GST for low and middle income seniors

The federal government’s press release announcing the date when the seniors would receive aid through Old Age Security, caused confusion among some seniors as they had never received any payment in April.

The press release mentioned that this aid would be in addition to the payment that seniors received in April. Seniors who had not received any such payment, were worried about this and reached out to the Lakes District News for clarification. When Lakes District News contacted the office for Minister of Seniors for details on this, Spokesperson Scott Bardsley confirmed that there indeed was a payment that went out to people on April 9.

Bardsley clarified that the April payment, as mentioned in the press release was part of the government’s one-time payment through the Goods and Services Tax (GST) credit. As many as four million low and middle income seniors who were most vulnerable received this targeted benefit. However, not all seniors were eligible for this credit.

ALSO READ: Government announces date for the $2.5 billion Old Age Security aid

On May 12, the government announced a $2.5 billion aid package to help seniors struggling during the Covid-19 pandemic. The payment was a one-time tax-free payment of $300 for those eligible under Old Age Security and an additional $200 for those eligible under Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS). This announcement however had no date on when payment would be given and seniors have been waiting for it ever since. The government has finally announced that the seniors would be receiving this payment directly in their accounts during the week of July 6.

This payment will be going out to not only those seniors who received the aid through GST but would extend to seniors who are eligible to receive the Old Age Security. An estimated total of 6.7 million seniors would be receiving the aid.

Bardsley also highlighted that some seniors might not have seen a big difference in April as the GST payment was a household payment that came to just one account for the family while the aid that will go out during the July 6 week will be individualized so every individual eligible for Old Age Security will receive this payment in their individual accounts. The government estimates that for a low-income couple on GIS, this payment, in addition to the April payment would mean a total of over $1,500 in support.

Priyanka Ketkar
Multimedia journalist

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