Mr Desmond Choo
MP for Tampines GRC
To ask the Minister for Social and Family Development (a) what is the trend of new ComCare recipients over the last five years; (b) what is the proportion of recipients who require ComCare support beyond the initial support of three months; and (c) how does the Ministry ensure that the level of support is adequate relative to changing costs of living.
1. The table below shows the number of unique households receiving ComCare Long-Term Assistance1(LTA) and Short-to-Medium-Term Assistance2(SMTA) from FY2013 to FY2017. MSF does not have readily available data on the number of new recipients for ComCare LTA and SMTA from FY2013 to FY2017.
No. of unique households assisted with ComCare LTA
2. In FY2017, 66.5% of households on ComCare SMTA received assistance for a total duration of longer than three months.
3. MSF regularly reviews the cash assistance rates and the ComCare eligibility criteria. In our review, we look at daily living expenditure data of low-income families collected by the Department of Statistics. We also consider input from community stakeholders such as social workers and frontline officers. We most recently increased our ComCare cash assistance rates from 1 Jul 2019. Apart from monthly cash assistance for their daily living expenses, households may also receive employment assistance, assistance with their household bills and medical bills, and referrals to other government agencies and community partners for relevant services.
1ComCare Long-Term Assistance provides long-term support to those who are permanently unable to work due to old age, illness or disability, and have little or no means of income and family support.
2ComCare Short-to-Medium-Term Assistance provides temporary financial support to low-income individuals or families who are temporarily unable to work, are looking for a job or are earning a low income and require assistance.