16.5% increase not enough – advocates say BC welfare rate increase needs to be higher

From the Globe and Mail:

British Columbia’s new NDP government has followed through on an election promise to raise social-assistance and disability rates by $100 a month, but advocates say more than a modest increase is needed to address poverty and homelessness in the province.

“I hope this is only a start – just the first step to a more thorough review of welfare and disability-assistance rates so that there is some relationship to the actual cost of living,” Adrienne Montani, provincial co-ordinator of the First Call BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition, said on Thursday.

“Because this is still not enough,” Ms. Montani added.

First Call and other advocacy groups have for years called for increases to social-assistance rates, which had not been raised since 2007 under the former Liberal government.

The NDP platform included a commitment to “immediately” raise all income and assistance rates by $100 a month.