The 50 year experiment forcing welfare recipients and low income persons with disabilities into financial destitution finally appears to be over.

In Charles Sousa’s Budget 2017, asset limits for single welfare recipients will be raised from $2,500 to $10,000 for a single person and to $11,000 for a lone parent with two children. Persons with disabilities will have their asset limits raised from $5,000 to $40,000 for singles and from $7,500 to $50,000 for couples.

The amount families will be able to donate to family members receiving assistance will go from $6,000 a year to $10,000.

This is welcome news after the initial moves in 2013 that quadrupled asset limits for single welfare recipients from the equivalent of one month’s assistance (about $650) and allowed families to donate money to welfare recipients without penalty for the first time. In the four years since 2013, policy analysts learned what the province of Quebec and Alberta and the states of Ohio, Illinois and Virginia had known for some time – that keeping recipients of social assistance in complete destitution does not save money.