Feds asking domestic abuse victims to face abusers for child benefit: NDP

Published on May 19, 2017

OTTAWA — The opposition New Democrats say women fleeing domestic abuse are being asked to get their abuser to sign a form so they can receive the Liberal government's vaunted child benefit.

The NDP says constituents have been coming to their offices with letters from the Canada Revenue Agency, which oversees benefit payments, asking them to verify that they are eligible for the monthly allowance.

The agency has multiple ways to determine which parent should receive the benefit in cases of separation or divorce, but one New Democrat from B.C. says his office was told the agency needed the signature of one of his constituents.

Wayne Stetski says the requirement puts the victim in danger and needs to be corrected.

The government is promising to look into the issue as quickly as possible after being caught off-guard by Stetski's concerns during today's question period.

The Liberals brought in the child benefit last year, rolling three benefits into one income-tested benefit that cost the government $23 billion a year.

The Canadian Press