Utilities Arrears Program

Ontario Works Social Assistance Cheques

The October 1 cheque will not be mailed even if a collective agreement is reached between Canada Post and its letter carriers. 

Ontario Works recipients

Ontario Works recipients can pick up their October 1 monthly cheque at Carisma Church, 16 West Avenue South, Hamilton on the following days:

  • Thursday, September 27, 2018 from 9 am to 4 pm
  • Friday, September 28, 2018 from 9 am to 4 pm
  • ​Monday, October 1, 2018 from 9 am to 4 pm

UPDATE: Ontario Works recipients who did not pick up their October 1 monthly cheque at Carisma Church are asked to speak with their case manager directly. 

Ontario Works recipients who regularly receive social assistance payments by direct deposit will continue to have their funds deposited into their bank account.

Monthly direct deposit statements and dental cards will continue to be mailed. 


Ontario Works payments to landlords have not been mailed to avoid cheques being held in the postal system.  Landlords can pick up their cheques at the Ontario Works office located at 2255 Barton Street East, Hamilton weekdays from 12 noon to 4 pm, starting Monday, September 24.  Please bring photo ID and a letter from the landlord authorizing you to pick up the cheque on their behalf. 

UPDATE: Ontario Works payments to landlords that were not picked up by the end of the day on October 1, 2018, have been placed in the mail.

Ontario Works payments and City of Hamilton payments to vendors will be continue to be mailed until a 72 Hour Notice of Intent to Strike has been issued.  If that occurs, cheques can be picked up at 120 King Street, 9th floor, Thursdays and Fridays, between 1 and 3 pm.

UPDATE: Effective October 2, 2018:

  • All new payments, direct deposit statements and dental cards to OW recipients will be placed in the mail following regular business processes.
  • All new payments to landlords and vendors will be placed in the mail following regular business processes.

Regular business processes will continue until further information concerning a possible strike is received and assessed for impact to our recipients, landlords and vendors.

For more information, please call Ontario Works at 905-546-4800.

New Ontario Electricity Support Program - visit ontarioelectricitysupport.ca
Visit OntarioElectricitySupport.ca

Funds to help low income households, Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program pay for utility arrears, disconnection and security deposits.

The Utilities Arrears Benefit provides assistance for utility arrears (hydro, electric, heat, water/sewage), security deposits and/or reconnection fees when the utility charges are not included in the cost of rent/condo fees.

  • Assistance provided up to $1,500 per year for families with children and dependent adults.
  • Assistance provided up to $800 per year for singles and couples without children.
  • A request will be made to the utility provider to immediately and temporarily to postpone utility disconnection.
  • Approved assistance will be paid directly to the utility company.

How to apply

Ontario Works Participants (OW)
Call 905-546-4800 and speak to your OW Case Manager

Ontario Disability Support Program Participants (ODSP)
Call 905-521-7280 and speak to your ODSP Case Manager for referral to Housing Help Centre

People living with low incomes who are not in receipt of OW or ODSP
Call 905-526-8100 and speak to the Housing Help Centre.

  • Housing Help Centre Office Hours:
    Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 10 am to 4:30 pm
    Wednesday: 12 noon to 4:30 pm

Low Income is based on the 2006 Statistics Canada Low-Income Cut-Off
Family Size - Income (after taxes)
1 person -  $17,570 
2 people -  $21,384 
3 people -  $26,628 
4 people -  $33,221
5 people -  $37,828
6 people -  $41,953
7+ people - $46,077