Thousands of families on track to miss out on planned bump to child benefit

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OTTAWA — Social Development Minister Yves Duclos says more than a fifth of Indigenous families living on reserves are missing out on the federal government’s monthly child benefit.

He says that compares to about five per cent of all families.

Duclos says the numbers are a concern, despite being an improvement on the system the Canada Child Benefit replaced when it was introduced in July 2016.

Aided by $17.3 million to be spent over three years, federal officials plan to visit more than 500 rural and remote Indigenous communities over the next 11 months to get more people to take advantage of the benefit.

Its value is increasing this summer for the second year in a row under a plan the Liberals first announced in fall 2017, to peg payments to the rate of inflation.

The maximum payments will be $6,639 for each child up to age five, and up to $5,602 per child aged six to 17 starting on July 20.