Funding doesn't go far enough, CARP says
By Chad Ingram
The president of the Haliburton chapter of the Canadian Association of Retired Persons says that while funding for seniors announced by the federal government earlier this month amid the COVID-19 crisis is welcome news, it doesn’t go far enough, and the organization is requesting a number of other changes to ease the financial burden on senior citizens.
On May 12, the government announced that seniors will receive a one-time payment of up to $500 to help offset their expenses amid the ongoing pandemic. This includes a one-time payment of $300 for all seniors who qualify for Old Age Security, as well as an additional $200 for those who qualify for the guaranteed income supplement.
“The $300 plus the additional $200 for GIS was welcomed but does not go far enough,” Haliburton CARP chapter president Jon Dannewald told the Times in an email. “CARP members are concerned with retirement security and access to liquidity. Seniors are looking to have as many tools as possible to maximize their cash flow and protect their retirement.”
Seniors who qualify for it may receive the Canadian
Emergency Response Benefit, as well as the one-time payment through the
GST credit. The government has also reduced the minimum amount of
withdrawals from registered retirement income funds for 2020 by 25 per
CARP is requesting that the government waive mandatory RRIF withdrawals completely for 2020; eliminate withholding tax on RRSP withdrawals and allow two years to repay taxes owing; and follow through on an election promise to increase both the OAS and CPP.
“As one of the demographics fatally threatened by COVID-19, many seniors are in desperate need of these supports in order to make ends meet while in social-isolation, quarantine or recovery,” reads a release from CARP. “Other have had their income slashed through loss of their job or wages.”