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New BC welfare numbers show continued climb

VICTORIA – The British Columbia welfare caseload continued to rise in April, according to government figures released today.

The total number of cases grew by 0.7 percent since March. The number in the expected to work category receiving temporary assistance was 54 percent higher in April than it was in June 2008.

The total number of clients, including those on disability assistance, was 161,780 in April.

That's still significantly lower than the 244,821 in 2001 when the then new B.C. Liberal Party took office and tightened eligibility requirements. In 1995 there were 367,387 clients on the welfare caseload.

The B.C. government last released welfare figures on May 15 after delaying the report on March numbers until the May 12 election was over.

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Reach him here.

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