Human Resources/Ontario Works

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Question
Dear Shirley

I quit my job last January and have been trying to find work and have had no luck.  You mentioned before I would not be entitled to Employment Insurance and having high blood pressure is not enough of a medical reason.

I do not have any injury or disability.  I am also registered with CSE and have had an employment consultant do up resumes for me and also have taken a workshop. She said I would be eligible for the Ontario Works financial assistance and to apply for it soon.  I understand this is also called welfare.  My dad said this is the bottom of the barrel and if I register the people there will give me a hard time and be into my apartment every so often to check up on things.  I understand they would give me financial assistance for rent and food.

My rent is 800 month and utilities are extra.  Since January I have had to borrow money from the bank and my loan limit is 15000 dollars.  I am at 14, 500 now which is very close to the limit.  My visa is 2400 limit and I am at 1232.00.  I am worried that my previous employers may find out I am applying for welfare.  I hope they never know about this as applying for social or financial assistance should be kept private.

Would Ontario Works give me back part of the money I have had to borrow from the bank these last four months while I still look for work and is this the only option left I should apply for as soon as possible?

I will lose my apartment in a few months if I keep having to borrow money from the bank.  I'm not sure how much Ontario Works would provide for me but if it could be only 500 dollars, that would still help.  It seems rather unlikely they will pay the full rent amount of 800 plus utilites.  My Dad said Ontario works would not pay out as much as EI.

Your thoughts please on me applying for the Ontario works program and how private this is?  I understand Ontario works would refer me to CSE but I am already registered with them and they are  helping me to find a job.  I do not know how long Ontario works would provide financial assistance for me, whether this is only up to 6 months, or maybe until I am working again.

Thank you!

Answer
I have not dealt with this program as it is not an employment  program. If it will offer you some help with the finances you should apply for it right away. They will not pay your bank, but they may help with the rent and food expenses. This is for those that need it and sounds like you need it. You should not feel bad about using a program that is provided for those in need. We all have difficulties once in a while and need a helping hand.

Shirley

Human Resources

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Shirley McAllister, CPP, PHR

Expertise

I can answer questions pertaining to Compensation, Health Benefits, Retirement Plans, Payroll,Payroll taxes, Employee selection, Employee Termination, Training, and Employee Incentives. I have offices in U.S., Canada, UK, South Africa,Australia and NZ. I am most confident in the U.S. and Canadian but have knowledge of the internationals. I do not have extensive knowledge of South Africa, Australia and New Zealand. I do have some Human Resource Knowledge in those areas. Please do not ask me homework questions, I do not have time to answer them.

Experience

I currently hold both the U.S. and Canadian Payroll Certifications. I currently hold the SHRM PHR certification. I have worked in the Human Resources area with high emphasis on compensation and benefits for 25 years at the same company. My company is an international company and I work with our International offices whenever there is a Human Resource area needing addressed. I volunteer on the American Payroll Association hotline and have for the last 10 years or so. I answer many questions each week for other payroll and HR professionals, mostly on taxes, benefits and compensation issues. I have been the trustee for our 401K plan for Retirement benefits and our 125 Cafeteria Plan for Health Insurance benefits.

Organizations
SHRM, National APA, National DOLEA, State National Mentoring Network I.O.M.A. Advisory Board

Publications
I.O.M.A. BNA

Education/Credentials
Boise State University Human Resource Certificate Program PHR through SHRM CPP through American Payroll Association Payroll Administrator and Payroll Supervisor certification through Canadian Payroll Association Published writer of Payroll and Benefit articles in a payroll Publication 25 years experience in an International Company

Awards and Honors
Citation of Merit 8 years in a row for hotline service for A.P.A. Honor Award for child mentoring service through RSVP and National Mentoring A "Pat on the Back" award for outstanding leadership as a Youth Group Leader by "The Salvation Army." Runner up for Employee of the Year at my Company twice and Employee of the month 4 times.

Past/Present Clients
I used to answer questions on Ask.com when they had a similar quesition and answer section. I volunteer for APA hotline I also belong to several HR forums when I often answer questions

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