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A payment scheduled for those living with disabilities, Saskatchewan Assured Income for Disability (SAID) is utilized by many living with chronic issues. Disabilities, as defined by the SAID program, is a significant and enduring issue that impacts daily function, requires support, and is likely permanent, whether presenting continuously or periodically. In order to compensate and live a healthy life, disabled people incur multiple extra expenses, potentially totalling thousands of dollars each year.
To exacerbate this issue, disabled people may encounter issues when gaining employment, whether that is due to necessary time off or accommodations. While it is illegal to discriminate against disabled people, ableism remains a pervasive issue. Though it doesn’t make up for the struggle of living with a disability, SAID payments offer a level of economic security which may otherwise be unavailable to those with disabilities. To budget your SAID payment, however, it helps to know payment dates and how the program actually works. Let’s delve into the details.
What is Saskatchewan Assured Income for Disability (SAID)?
The SAID program is a joint effort between the Government of Saskatchewan and the Ministry of Social Services. It was structured through the use of feedback from the disabled community, meant to be a more accessible replacement to the former SAP arrangement, short for Saskatchewan Assistance Program.
Effective 2019, the previous program and its supplemental Transitional Employment Allowance (TEA) no longer took new applications. Those who remain reliant on SAP will be phased out of the benefits in the summer of 2021. To ensure the continuation of benefits, it is important to reach out to SAID and file for assistance if you have not done so already.
How Much Do You Get Through SAID?
The specific amount you receive from this benefit depends on personal circumstance. It is governed in a tiered structure, depending on your physical location. It’s broken down into four tiers for the living benefit, detailed as follows:
SAID Program Rates
|Tier Level||SAID Program Rates Per Month|
|Tier A||$1,064 to $1759||Meant for those living in Lloydminster, Regina, Saskatoon, Warman, municipalities in this area fall under this tier.|
|$1,009 to $1,634|
Those living in Creighton, Laronge, Melville, Prince Albert, Yorkton, and other nearby areas get access to this tier.
|Tier C||$968 to $1,600||Residents of Humboldt, Meadow Lake, Moose Jaw, North Battleford, and other larger-sized towns fall under this tier.|
|Tier D:||$931 to $1,467||If you reside in a town not listed on the SAID breakdown, whether that is rural or a social housing unit, you fall into this category.|
Within the context of each tier, the amount you receive will depend on the size of the household. For instance, one adult receives less benefit funding than a house with two adults. Single parents get an increased benefit, depending on the number of children they are supporting. Two-parent households are paid the highest, with the largest benefit payout being to a two-parent household with five or more children, living in a Tier A zone.
SAID: Saskatchewan Disability Benefits
The overall benefit structure is calculated first based on the cost of living associated with each different region, referred to as a tier. This accounts for the living income benefit, however the full scope of the program is more nuanced. There are other allowances offered, namely:
Modified Living Benefit
If you are living in a situation relying on room and board, or room alone, then the living benefit is modified. This benefit is meant to account for expenses including accommodation, clothes, incidentals, food, and basic personal needs. One adult receives $805, two receive $1,310, and an extra $85 is added per child in the household.
Though the nature of the transportation must be within reason and approved by the program, SAID recipients receive an allowance to travel to medical treatment, bring children to school, get to work or to day programs, and for more extreme situations like attending a funeral. Because each of these situations is unique to where the person resides and the destination of their travel, the benefit amount is variable.
All tiers receive the same benefits, provided they opt for a fixed amount as opposed to the real cost of the utilities. For example, if your actual phone bill is only $20, you can choose the $30 monthly payout. However, because of the monetary association for each category, it is usually better to choose the actual utility cost.
- Telephone: The fixed amount for telephone bills is $30. It’s unclear whether this is landline specific, or if the amount would work towards a cell phone. While there are affordable phone plans within this range, most are landlines with mobile devices running a higher price tag.
- Electricity: The set amount for electricity is $84, with an extra $13 tacked on per person in the household. The total amount offered is $136, regardless of the number of people in the home.
- Heating/energy: The basic amount for a single person household is fixed at $93, with an extra $8 per additional person. It’s capped at a fixed offer of $125. Depending on the energy efficiency of the home, and the cold in winter, the annual average of $848 should remain true. In this case, the fixed amount is reasonable, though some situations may require you to opt for a bill-specific benefit.
- Water and sewer: A single person household gets a base amount of $50, with an added $6 per person, up to a cap of $74. It’s meant to address the cost of waste removal and septic care.
- Laundry: For the purposes of laundry, where the recipient is unable to do laundry or their living place doesn’t accommodate laundry, there is an extra benefit. Single recipients get $10 per month, with an extra $5 per person, to a cap of $25. Unlike utilities which can be matched to the actual cost of the utility, this is a fixed amount.
- Child Care: For children under the age of 13, there is a per diem amount offered for each child, with a choice of either half or full days. For one child, the daily amount is $10 for a half day and $20 for a full day. It caps at four or more children with a half-day max of $21 and a full day cap of $41. Keep in mind that recipients can use subsidized care in its stead, though they forfeit this facet of SAID benefits.
Are you a parent? For even more help, check out the Canada Child Benefit.
Other Saskatchewan Disability Benefits
In addition to the above-noted benefits, there are extras affiliated with the SAID program. These include:
- Disability Income Benefit: Available to those receiving either modified or standard living benefits, this provides an extra $70 per month.
- Northern Living Supplement: Meant to address the added cost of living in northern regions, this gives an added $50 for each member of the household every month.
- Household Disability Support Benefit: Homes where families must outsource household tasks due to the disability for which they receive SAID support are offered an extra $25 per month to mitigate that expense.
- Exceptional Needs Activity Benefit: Available to those who live in an approved private care home, licensed in Saskatchewan, this is an extra $25 per month to ease expenses.
- Personal Living Benefit: This is only available to those not qualifying for the living benefit due to their residence. It extends from hotels to temporary residential or treatment facilities. An amount of $265 per adult and $55 per child is supplied monthly to buffer the cost.
To find out what tier your location falls under, and specifically what you can gain from accessing SAID Saskatchewan benefits, consult this document. It will allow you to calculate the expected income and ensure that this is a good route for your household.
Saskatchewan Assured Income for Disability (SAID) Payment Dates
|Payment Month in 2021||Mailed Cheques||Direct Deposit Date|
|January||December 23||December 30|
|February||January 25||January 28|
|March||February 22||February 25|
|April||March 25||March 30|
|May||April 26||April 29|
|June||May 25||May 28|
|July||June 24||June 29|
|August||July 23||July 29|
|September||August 25||August 30|
|October||September 24||September 29|
|November||October 25||October 28|
|December||November 25||November 29|
Saskatchewan Assured Income For Disability (SAID) Benefits
The purpose of this benefit is to enable disabled people to both afford the regular costs of living and to accommodate the extra expenses associated with being disabled. Though there is a detailed program meant to specifically meet the need of each household, some standards remain:
The Living Income
This is meant to cover the cost of standard living expenses including housing, transportation (to and from appointments, work, or school), and the costs of food. There are benefits for utilities and child care, including the other basic living costs associated with life in 2021.
The Disability Income
This facet of the support is meant to assist with costs specifically resulting from their disability. An example is requiring a wheelchair for mobility, treatments, in-home care, or other costs directly related to the disability itself.
The Exceptional Need Income
Every situation is unique, and there are certain exceptional needs that arise, supported through the SAID benefit. It can include the extra cost of specialized food items, service animal support and care, or other specialized necessities.
Who’s Eligible For The SAID Program?
In order to qualify for SAID benefits, you must be a resident of Saskatchewan and at least 18 years old. Recipients must lack the monetary resources necessary to meet basic needs. Finally, there must be an enduring disability, permanent by nature, and impacting your daily function in a way that requires accommodation. In order to qualify, recipients must have a Disability Impact Assessment to ensure that the disability meets the criteria.
How Do You Apply For The SAID Program?
The first step to application is reaching out. You can call the SAID inquiry line at 1-888-567-7243 or go directly to your nearby social services office. If you are currently receiving the SAP program, now being phased out, contact your Income Assistance Worker to get assistance transitioning to the new program.
Beneficiaries of the SAID support program have files facilitated by 18 ministry service locations throughout the province. They offer assistance with filling out the application, planning support, offering referrals, and tracking down other programs for which the individual may be eligible.
What happens if I get denied for SAID?
Can I get a loan if I’m on SAID?
What other income support program does Saskatchewan have?
Everyone deserves to have their needs met. From housing to food to personal care, programs like SAID ensure that disabled people don’t fall through the cracks. There are services in place, aiming to add ease to the application process. Though it can feel overwhelming to pursue benefits, once you are enrolled in SAID, since the disability is deemed permanent by nature, the program is ongoing. By using all the resources made available by the Saskatchewan government, including SAID, disabled people can improve their quality of life and afford the supplies necessary to thrive.
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