Age Security Benefit Rates to Increase on April 1, 2004
26 /CNW/ - Social Development Canada today announced that
Old Age Security (OAS) benefit rates will increase as
of April 1, 2004.
The basic OAS pension,
paid to people 65 years of age and over, will be $463.39
per month. This is an increase of 0.2 percent over the
rate for the previous three months.
The maximum Guaranteed Income
Supplement (GIS) and Allowance payments, which are based
on the recipient's family income during the previous year,
will also increase by 0.2 percent.
Increases in OAS rates
are based on changes in the average Consumer Price Index
(CPI). Since 1973, all OAS benefits have been adjusted
quarterly (in January, April, July and October).
Canada's Old Age Security
program provides seniors with a secure base of retirement
income. It also provides additional benefits to eligible
low-income pensioners and their spouses or common-law
partners in the form of the Guaranteed Income Supplement
(GIS) and the Allowance.
The OAS program is the first
level of Canada's three-level retirement income system.
It is funded through general tax revenues and provides
a basic minimum income for Canadian seniors. The OAS program
is the most widely accessible source of income for older
Canadians, providing four million seniors with more than
$26 billion in 2002/2003.
The second level, the Canada
Pension Plan (or the Quebec Pension Plan in Quebec), is
funded through contributions by Canadian workers and their
employers and the self?employed, as well as through earnings
on investment of the Plan's funds. In addition to retirement
benefits, the Plan also provides disability benefits,
death benefits, survivor benefits, and benefits for children.
Together, the CPP and the
OAS program-the first two levels of the retirement income
system-enhance the quality of life of Canada's seniors
by providing a modest base on which to build additional
income for retirement.
The third level is
made up of private savings, including employer- sponsored
pension plans and registered retirement savings plans
(RRSPs). A table showing the maximum rate for each benefit
Maximum Old Age Security
Benefit Rates as of April 1, 2004
of Old Age Security Benefit
Maximum Monthly Benefit Rates
April - June 2004
|Basic Old Age Security
|Guaranteed Income Supplement
|- a non-pensioner
|- a pensioner
|- an Allowance recipient
- Tough new energy efficiency standards help protect the
environment and save consumers money
QUEEN'S PARK, ON, March 26 /CNW/ - A regulation setting
tough new energy efficiency standards for nine products
will increase energy conservation, help protect the environment
and result in savings for consumers, Energy Minister Dwight
Duncan announced today.
"This regulation is good news for consumers and good
news for a healthier environment," said Duncan. "Efficient
energy use saves consumers money and helps keep our air
clean by reducing our reliance on coal-fired electricity
and other energy sources that generate greenhouse gases."
The regulation, filed under Ontario's Energy Efficiency
Act, will set high standards for two new products - thermostats
used with individual-room electric space-heaters, and
industrial and commercial gas-fired package furnaces with
inputs above 400,000 BTU per hour. It will also set tougher
standards for another seven products already covered by
the act. The proposed compliance date for the two new
products is January 1, 2005, and it is estimated that
the regulation will provide more than $2 million in savings
to residential and commercial energy users in the first
year. "Since the Energy Efficiency Act was passed
in 1988, it has resulted in
estimated savings equivalent to a year's worth of power
for the cities of London and Windsor combined," said
Duncan. Passed in 1988 under the Peterson government,
Ontario's Energy Efficiency Act was the first legislation
of its kind in Canada. It gives the Province authority
to set minimum efficiency standards and compliance dates
for residential, commercial and industrial electrical
products sold or leased in Ontario. The act currently
covers 54 products, with estimated energy cost savings
of nearly $300 million since 1988. "This act, and
its subsequent regulations, is a testament to the commitment
of Liberal governments past and present to conservation
and energy efficiency," noted Duncan.
The seven other products already covered include power
transformers; incandescent reflector lamps; gas-fired
automatic storage-type water heaters; household dishwashers;
dusk-to-dawn luminaries; packaged chillers for commercial
buildings; and household electric ranges.
The McGuinty government is committed to protecting the
interests of Ontarians by making positive changes to Ontario's
electricity sector. These changes are aimed at creating
a conservation culture and a cleaner Ontario, while ensuring
a reliable, sustainable and diverse supply of competitively
priced power for the province.
Disponible en français.
For more information visit
to be in driver's seat on your mental health?
TORONTO, March 26 /CNW/ - The Canadian Mental Health Association
(CMHA), Ontario and the Ontario Psychological Association
(OPA) today launched Mental Health Tune Up 2004, a two-day
event scheduled for May 4 and 5 that brings over 80 mental
health and wellness organizations together to help everyone
build their own tool kit to handle the bumps in life's
road. The event will challenge all Ontarians to put themselves
in the driver's seat when it comes
to their mental health.
This is the third year that these partners have brought
Mental Health Tune Up to Toronto. Close to 5,000 people
are expected to get on the road to peak performance, resilience
and improved mental outlook by visiting nine different
Tune Up zones - children, personal mental health, family,
seniors, workplace, mind and body, adolescent and young
adults, women's and men's
issues and special needs - to meet and mingle with over
80 mental health organizations, psychologists and counsellors
as well as to sit in on 26 seminars and view movies on
topics relevant to parents and family members, friends
and teachers. "Mental health and wellness matters
to everyone and there will be something for everyone at
Mental Health Tune Up," said Dr. Karen Katchen, chair
of the OPA's Public Education Committee and co-chair of
the Tune Up event.
One in 5 people will suffer mental illness during their
lifetime. "People often don't know where to turn
for assistance for themselves, family or friends,"
said Judy Watson, Vice President of CMHA, Ontario and
co-chair of Tune Up. "Mental Health Tune Up helps
people make much-needed connections with mental health
resources and expertise." "Talk with a Doc,"
which provides a one-one on consultation, is a great way
to make that connection and will be offered in more than
12 languages this year. Also new this year is the multicultural,
multi-lingual Drop-In Centre.
Tune Up also attracts considerable crowds with its annual
keynote speaker who officially opens the event at 10:00
a.m. on May 4, followed by the annual Mental Health Champion
Award presentation. This year, Canadian Olympian Marnie
McBean is the keynote speaker and will offer considerable
insights to the efforts an athlete must make to stay physically
and mentally tuned-up. Maple Leaf and Team Canada veteran
Ron Ellis, who wrote a book on his personal experiences
with depression called "Over the Boards," will
be the award recipient.
McBean is one of Canada's most accomplished Olympic athletes.
She is one of only two Canadians ever to have won three
gold medals in the summer Olympics, striking gold twice
in Barcelona and once in Atlanta. At Mental Health Tune
Up, she will turn her public speaking skills and infectious
enthusiasm to the importance of mental wellness to achieve
peak performance - in work, athletic pursuits and all
areas of life.
Ron Ellis combined skill and sporting play throughout
his hockey career. Ron spent his entire 15 year NHL tenure
with the Toronto Maple Leafs where he became one of the
most respected individuals to ever wear the 'blue and
white.' Ron is an inspiration to many, not only for his
successful hockey career, but for his courage in overcoming
clinical depression, and sharing his story. He will receive
the Mental Health Champion Award in recognition of his
commitment to do whatever possible to alleviate the stigma
of mental illness, particularly in the workplace, by sharing
his personal journey.
Mental Health Tune Up is
a partnership of OPA and CMHA, Ontario. To learn more
about the event, visit www.mentalhealthtuneup.ca.
Study Just Released on the Treatment of Arthritic Dogs
OTTAWA, March 26 /CNW/ - The Canadian Cervid Council is
pleased to announce the publication in the Canadian Veterinary
Medical Journal of a study outlining the positive effects
of elk velvet antler on arthritic dogs. For further information
on velvet antler products and their availability contact
the Canadian Cervid Council office at (613) 798-9994 or
Clinical evaluation of a powder of quality elk velvet
antler for the treatment of osteoarthrosis in dogs
Maxim Moreau, Jacques Dupuis, Norbert H Bonneau, Manon
Abstract - A powder
of quality elk velvet antler (QEVA) was evaluated on client-owned
dogs with osteoarthrosis (OA) in a clinical, double-blind,
and placebo-controlled study. Thirteen dogs received a
placebo for 30 days and then QEVA for 60 days. Twenty-five
other dogs received QEVA for 60 days. Gait analysis measured
with a force plate, clinical signs assessed by an orthopedic
surgeon, performances in daily life activities and vitality
assessed by the owners, and complete blood analyses were
obtained at days 0, after 30 days of placebo and/or 60
days of QEVA. On placebo, the 13 dogs did not show significant
improvement (P greater than 0.05); however, their gait,
their performances in daily life activities, and their
vitality were significantly
improved on QEVA, based on changes in values exceeding
those observed when placebo was administered. The 25 dogs
on QEVA for 60 days showed similar improvements. No clinical
changes were revealed on blood analyses. Administration
of QEVA was effective in alleviating the condition in
"For a complete
copy of the article published in the February issue, please
contact Heather Broughton at: (613) 236-1162 ext 24 or
by email at firstname.lastname@example.org."