Alberta government boosting AISH, Income Support, and senior benefit payments on Jan. 1

Albertans who depend on Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH), Income Support, and the Alberta Seniors Benefit will see an increase in their monthly benefit starting in the new year.

In a news release, the Government of Alberta says the rate is set to jump up by 4.25 per cent, starting Jan. 1, 2024.

In addition, it says January AISH and Income Support payments will be distributed on Dec. 21, while the nearly 200,000 Albertans on the Alberta Seniors Benefit will see the increase on their January cheques.

This amounts to an increase from $1,787 to $1,863 for AISH, $790 to $824 in Income Support for those who are expected to work, $919 to $959 in Income Support for those with barriers to full employment, and $303 to $316 for those who receive the Alberta Seniors Benefit.

It states this will help give vulnerable Albertans the “resources they need to keep up with inflation.”

“Indexing benefits is a critical measure to support vulnerable Albertans who are struggling due to inflation,” said Minister Jason Nixon.

“Thousands of people access our financial assistance programs, which is why it is so important to ensure benefits can help cover the increasing costs of food, housing and other essential goods and services.”

Watch: Alberta increases supports for AISH, seniors

The province says over 75,000 Albertans receive AISH each month and 48,000 receive Income Support. In addition, around 44,000 children are dependents of AISH and Income Support recipients.

This marks the fourth time AISH has been increased in the past decade.

Progressive Conservative Leader Alison Redford boosted AISH by $400 in April of 2012.

Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley indexed AISH in January 2019 to line up with inflation. When the UCP was elected, it de-indexed AISH payments.

However, Alberta Premier Danielle Smith announced in a televised address in late 2022 a plan to re-index AISH, which happened five months before the provincial election.

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In the news release, Joy Bowen-Eyre, the CEO of The Alex Community Health Centre, says she is “pleased” with the province’s commitment to adjust AISH and Income Support to line up with inflation.

“This is an important first step, which will provide some financial relief to Albertans who are continuing to struggle with the increasing cost of living,” she said.

-With files from Jillian Code

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