Discretionary Benefits

Discretionary Benefits are provided to recipients of Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Plan who require financial assistance to purchase health related items.

COVID-19 Announcement:

Our offices are closed to the public. Programs and services are open virtually with most services related to Ontario Works being provided by phone, fax, and email. Some in person service appointments will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please call your nearest Bruce County office at the numbers below for any inquires or for more information.

Walkerton: 519-881-0431

Kincardine: 519-396-2116

Port Elgin: 519-389-5580

Wiarton: 519-534-1286

Discretionary Benefits

Discretionary Benefits are provided to individuals in receipt of benefits under the Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Plan (ODSP).  Assistance may be available to those who require financial assistance to purchase health related items.  Approvals are based upon individual need and confirmation from a health provider that the item is medically required. 

To apply for discretionary benefits, contact your  Ontario Works Income Support Worker or your ODSP Case Manager to determine if you meet the eligibility criteria.  You may be eligible for items such as  walkers, splints, orthotics, and other health related items.  The amount and list of eligible items is determined by each Ontario Works office.

Burial and Cremation Assistance

In the event that a loved one passes away during the COVID-19 Pandemic, the person who is acting as the Next of Kin  for the deceased may be eligible for financial assistance for the cost of a direct burial or direct cremation if the estate has insufficient assets.

To determine eligibility, the Next of Kin will need to provide the following information for the deceased individual:

  • Bank account information; 
  • Income source(s);
  • Asset/investment information;
  • Social Insurance Number (SIN); and
  • A copy of their Birth Certificate.

The Next of Kin will not be eligible if the deceased:

  • Has a life insurance policy (regardless of the beneficiary);
  • Owns their own home/property;
  • Has an RRSP or other Investments; or
  • Has sufficient funds in their bank account.

Normal Business Hours (Monday-Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm):

  • Please call 1-800-265-3005 or 519-881-0431
  • Ask to speak with the Human Services department.

Outside of Normal Business Hours (during COVID-19):

  • You (or a service provider on your behalf) can contact the Bruce County after-hours answering service at 519-396-3439 or 1-800-265-3022;
  • With your consent, your service provider can let Bruce County know that you, as Next of Kin, are seeking financial assistance for a direct burial or direct cremation. Your full name and contact number will need to be provided so that Human Services staff can follow up in a timely manner. 
Contact us
Aryn Becker
Income Support Supervisor
Human Services
Location:  Walkerton Administration Centre Tel:  519-881-0431


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