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Manitoba will not claw back federal child benefit.

The Manitoba government will not claw-back the federal Universal Child Care Benefit paid to families with children under age six in receiving employment and income assistance, Family Services and Housing Minister Christine Melnick said. The decision will increase the incomes of dependent families with children.

According to Minister Melnick, the province's pass-through of this new benefit will help more than 10,000 young children, with the total amount available for these low-income families expected to exceed $10 million per year. For example, a family receiving income assistance with three children under the age of six will have $3,600 more in income each year.

Earlier, the Manitoba government fully restored the National Child Benefit Supplement, ending the clawback of this benefit from families participating in income assistance. This resulted in $13.7 million more per year in disposable income for these families.

Since 1999, the province has increased the benefits available to income assistance participants by:

* raising rates, introducing a new Northern Energy Cost Benefit for people living in northern and remote regions,

* increasing mileage rates and improving basic allowances,

* improved work incentives,

* increases to the school supplies allowance,

* exemption of compensation payments for abuse at residential schools,

* Registered Education Savings Plans, and

* lump-sum payments for persons with disabilities to help
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Publication:Community Action
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1CMAN
Date:May 22, 2006
Words:211
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