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Expected to Work/Barriers to Full Employment Policy & Procedures

Published Date: May 13, 2016
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05 Limited/Ineligible Groups

Persons Involved in Justice System

Income and Employment Supports Act, sections 2, 6 and 15(1)(a)(b)
Income Support, Training and Health Benefits Regulation, section 15


Provincial and Federal Offenders
There are a variety of ways in which an offender can be released from either a federal or provincial correctional facility. Eligibility for Income Support (IS) is based, in part, upon the conditions of release.

Persons on statutory release or parole have been released from federal institutions administered by Correctional Service Canada (CSC). Persons on a Temporary Absence (T.A.) have been released from a provincial facility administered by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General. Probation is a non-custodial release issued by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General.

Persons with specific types of releases who can comply with the IS expectation of seeking and accepting full-time employment, may be eligible for IS providing they meet all other eligibility criteria.

Persons who are the responsibility of the criminal justice system are not eligible for IS. Ineligible persons include:

  • Offenders in a provincial or federal correctional center.
  • Persons who because of the condition of their sentence or release are unable to work.
  • Persons granted a temporary absence from a provincial facility administered by Alberta Justice and Solicitor General.
  • Persons required by CSC to reside in a half-way house or Community Residential Centre.
  • Persons on day parole from a federal correctional centre or Community Residential Centre.

Provided all other conditions of eligibility are met, the following persons may meet the eligibility requirements:

  • Persons residing in a half-way house or Community Residential Centre who are not required by the conditions of their release to do so.
  • Persons released to live in the community-at-large without a specific residency requirement.

Persons involved in the justice system must verbally declare the conditions of their release and are required to provide official documents to substantiate their status and possible eligibility for IS. Documentation includes Parole Order, Release Certificate, or Probation Order.


Matching LISA and Alberta Solicitor General Inmate Records
Alberta Justice and Solicitor General provides Community and Social Services with monthly computer data which matches the names of offenders in provincial correctional centres with those of active IS clients. Clients incarcerated in provincial correctional centres and who are currently receiving IS benefits are identified on report SEIP 3850-1 Alberta Community and Social Services Match between LISA and Alberta Justice and Solicitor General.

The printout includes the following information:

Admit Date: The latest date that a person was admitted to the correctional centre. It is possible in some instances for a person to be released on temporary absence and then re-admitted before expiry of their sentence.

Aggregate Sentence: The total number of days to be held in sentence custody. It could combine sentences for more than one conviction.

ORCA Number: A unique identifier that Alberta Justice and Solicitor General assigns to each offender.

Correctional Centre: Where the client is being held. The initials are explained in the legend on each page of the printout.

When a worker receives a SEIP 3850-1 Alberta Community and Social Services Match between LISA and Alberta Justice and Solicitor General computer printout indicating that a client was or is incarcerated in a provincial centre, the worker will:

  1. Review the file and determine whether the information is already known.
  2. If there is no record of that client information already on file, contact the client and determine the period of time the client spent in custody.
  3. If there is no contact from the client or if the client responds but the information provided is suspicious, contact the office listed below and request the exact dates the client was in custody.
  4. Once the incarceration period has been determined, assess the client’s eligibility and take the appropriate action. This may involve one or more of the following actions:
    • A system closure
    • Referral to the Fraud Investigation Unit
    • Creation of a debt in the Recoveries System.
    • Adjustment of the household unit’s benefit level

No repayment or prorating of benefits is calculated for the first month of incarceration if the client was eligible for IS at the first day of the benefit period.

Child care or homemaking is not provided for the children of a person who has been incarcerated. If there is no adult available to care for children in this situation, workers must refer the person to Children’s Services.

Offenders Unlawfully at Large from a Correctional Facility
When a worker becomes aware that an applicant or recipient is unlawfully-at-large from a provincial or federal correctional centre or Community Residential Centre, the worker is authorized to deny IS eligibility or benefits. In these situations, the following must occur:

  1. Workers must inform the supervisor or manager of their findings.
  2. The Alberta Works Center staff must request a release of information from the Regional Director according to Section 38 of the FOIP Act.
  3. After obtaining the Regional Director’s approval, the Alberta Works Centre staff must inform the nearest police or RCMP detachment of the escapee’s contact with the department.
  4. When the individual has left the Alberta Works Centre, the worker enters alert 03 Eligibility Concerns on CCD.
  5. When benefits are believed to have been obtained fraudulently, the worker refers the client to the Investigations Unit for investigation.

No action is required when a worker becomes aware that there is an outstanding warrant for an income support client. The worker can use discretion to determine whether a release of information should be requested and the police contacted for matters that may result in a safety concern for Community and Social Services staff or the public.