Human Resources, Labour and Employment
March 31, 2008
Province Supports Tax Measures and Support Trusts for People with Disabilities
The Provincial Government has amended regulations to support improvements to the tax system for individuals with low incomes, and people with disabilities and their families by exempting both the federal Working Income Tax Benefit and the Registered Disability Saving Plan from the calculation of Income Support benefits. The two exemptions are effective April 1, 2008.
Further, the Provincial Government is providing the Newfoundland and Labrador Association for Community Living (NLACL) with a grant of $85,000 to promote, increase awareness and develop the capacity of individuals with disabilities and their families to fully realize these benefits through the establishment of a Support Trust.
"These two income support exemptions will help individuals with low incomes to take advantage of work opportunities and improve their quality of life, and it will encourage family financial planning for individuals with disabilities," said the Honourable Shawn Skinner, Minister of Human Resources, Labour and Employment. "Government is pleased to work with the Newfoundland and Labrador Association for Community Living in the development of their related public awareness and education campaign. This will help individuals with disabilities and their families understand the benefits of establishing a Support Trust to better secure their financial future."
A Support Trust is a recognized financial tool to enable individuals with disabilities and their families to plan, invest and save for the future. The NLACL will conduct research to identify resources, and develop information guides to help families understand and implement a Support Trust. The NLACL will design, plan, develop and deliver a series of regional and local workshops to further promote awareness within the community and help families learn the steps associated with the establishment of a Support Trust.
"This is a terrific announcement", said Ray McIsaac, President of Newfoundland and Labrador Association for Community Living. "Parents and families now have opportunities to plan financially for a time when they are no longer living or are unable to act as primary caregivers. They can leave funds directly to their family members that can not be clawed back from income support. The grant enables our association to support individuals and families with plain language information on how to use savings, insurance and other tools to secure their future."
Through the Poverty Reduction Strategy, the Provincial Government is firmly committed to ensuring that the tax system is responsive to the needs of families with low income and persons with disabilities, and that benefit enhancements are made available to meet their needs.
2008 03 31 2:30 p.m.
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