The City of Peterborough provides social services including Social Assistance, Children's Services, Housing and Homelessness and the Community Development Program.


Social Assistance
Social Assistance provides personnel and other client program costs to deliver Financial Assistance and Life Stabilization activities. Eligible residents receive help with costs of food, shelter, dental, vision care and Life Stabilization supports.


In 2019, the Province announced that Peterborough would be part of one of three prototype regions for the Employment Services Transformation across the Province. Beginning January 1, 2021 the focus of Ontario Works (OW) is now life stabilization supports to clients to enhance their readiness for employment referrals. A restructuring of the Social Services Division occurred in late 2020
to better serve clients under the new model and to function with a 22% reduction in the provincial OW Administration funding.

Since 2018, the OW Administration provincial funding has been frozen at 2018 actual which means that despite the elimination of
staff positions and reduction in Employment Benefits to clients, the City cost shares have gradually increased. The City of
Peterborough received additional Admin funding for 2 FTE to do intensive case management with youth. This funding expires March
31st, 2022.

In February 2021 the Province announced a Social Assistance Recovery and Renewal Plan that impacts the way Social Assistance (OW and Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)) will be delivered both locally and at the Provincial level. Municipalities will action plan and collaborate with a range of community partners to provide Life Stabilization and discretionary benefits. The Province will provide financial supports, financial controls, and back end supports that can be centralized. Municipal work will be completed with a person-centered lens, connecting supports and navigating broader supports such as child care, housing, housing stability funds, physical, mental health and addictions supports.

The 2020 OW actual caseload average was 3285, and the 2021 budgeted average caseload is 3701. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact of the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) and other financial supports being extended late
into 2021, the caseload has decreased (average caseload for the first six months of 2021 is 2846). The 2022 average caseload has
been set at 3300 as it is expected that people will move back to OW once CERB ends.

The Province funds Mandatory Benefits at 100% while OW discretionary benefits is capped at $10 per combined OW and ODSP cases per month.

Following up on the KPMG recommendations, staff continue to examine options to prioritize health needs within discretionary funding.

 Children's Services
The City of Peterborough provides personnel and other support costs to deliver Children’s Services for the early years and childcare programs. Fee subsidy to eligible families, operating grants to licensed child care and EarlyON service providers, Special Needs Resources result in quality care for children and allows families to attend to their employment, training and parenting needs.


In 2022, there will be an overall increase in licensed childcare spaces in the City and the County, resulting from the expansion of
spaces in licensed childcare programs in the County. This growth will shift the cost share to 67% City, 33% County in 2022 from 68% City, 32% County in 2021.

In 2019, the Ministry of Education announced several key funding changes to be phased in over the next three years. In 2020,
municipalities were asked to cost share the operating portion of Expansion Plan funding at a rate of 80/20 provincial/municipal. In
2021, all Children's Services administrative funding is cost shared at a rate of 50/50 with municipalities. Previously most
administration funding was at 100% provincially funded. In 2022, the threshold for allowable Children's Services administration
funding will be reduced from 10% to 5%. Any administration cost over the threshold amount will be 100% municipal.

In 2022, the Municipal Child Care programs will increase the per diem fees by 2% to help offset increase in costs.

In 2021, the municipality received $1,262,727 in EarlyON Child and Family Centre services funding. This program is 100% provincially funded. It is anticipated that in 2022 this funding will remain the same with no changes to the municipal cost share requirements.

Housing and Homelessness

The City of Peterborough is the Service Manager for Housing and Homelessness Services. The Social Services Division is
responsible for administering, funding, and providing policy direction and overseeing standards for approximately 2,000 social
housing units, 1,569 of which are Rent Geared to Income (RGI). Social Housing projects are owned and managed by 16 non-profit
organizations and Peterborough Housing Corporation. Housing and Homelessness services are also responsible to plan,
administer, and fund housing options across the continuum of housing needs, from shelters, transitional and supportive housing to
RGI and affordable rental units. The 2020 review of the Housing and Homelessness Plan commits to ending chronic homelessness by 2025. Two key initiatives are required to meet this goal: creating more units dedicated to people experiencing homelessness and creating a response to homelessness that is housing-focused and supports people to obtain and retain housing.


Housing Services provides ongoing subsidy for social housing providers, ensuring compliance through program and policy support, including operational reviews and providing support for asset management. The social housing portfolio has an assessed value of more than $150 million.

Funding for affordable housing development and housing renovation are provided through the Ontario Priorities Housing Initiative and the Canada-Ontario Community Housing Initiative. The City also has a federal-provincial funding allocation in 2022 for portable housing benefits through the Canada Ontario Housing Benefit. Homelessness Services has contracts with local partners to provide supports and services in a community-wide homelessness system response. This system continues to experience financial and service pressures related to increasing numbers of individuals and families experiencing homelessness, and social distancing expectations. Provincial Homelessness funding has not been confirmed beyond March 31, 2023. COVID-19 related funding that
has funded isolation shelters has not been confirmed past December 31, 2021. All shelters and the overflow shelter currently operating out of 210 Wolfe St. have operated at reduced capacity during COVID-19.

2022 Overview

Social Assistance
Description2022 recommended
Expenditures $40,949,816
Revenues, County contribution $845,563
Revenues, Provincial and other $35,762,705
Net requirement $4,341,548
Children's Services
Description2022 recommended
Expenditures $18,151,431
Revenues, County contribution $784,378
Revenues, Provincial and other $15,774,529
Net requirement $1,592,524
Housing and Homelessness
Description2022 recommended
Expenditures $23,470,800
Revenues, County contribution $6,187,787
Revenues, Provincial and other $11,542,952
Net requirement $5,740,061