TRENTON, NJ -- An estimated 100,000 additional New Jersey households in communities hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy could be eligible to receive food assistance benefits under provisions made to a federal program, Gov. Christie’s office announced earlier this week.
Beginning on Monday, Nov. 26, individuals who do not already receive benefits through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program can apply for Disaster SNAP. If approved, recipients could be eligible to receive up to $200 in electronic benefits according to the state Department of Human Services.
Disaster SNAP, or D-SNAP, is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition service through DHS and Boards of Social Services at the county level. Applications will be accepted for seven business days through Monday, Dec. 3. In those counties where the Board of Social Services does not accept applications on Saturday, Dec. 1, applicants have until Tuesday, Dec. 4. Check with your local office for hours and days of operation.
“Allowing individuals and families to apply for D-SNAP that were not receiving SNAP prior to Hurricane Sandy, is a tremendous help at a time when so many people have encountered unexpected expenses as they work to rebuild their lives,” said Adele LaTourette, director of the New Jersey Anti-Hunger Coalition. “This provision helps those individuals who may have been making ends meet before the storm, but just barely. So many families’ lives and homes have been devastated and this provision provides a critical need for families that were pushed over the financial edge by Sandy.”
Eligible recipients will receive benefits on an Electronic Benefits Transfer card that only can be used for the purchase of grocery food items. Current SNAP recipients do not need to apply for this program because they already received a 30 percent replacement allocation for October on their EBT card and will receive a supplemental benefit by Dec. 7, according to the DHS.
“We’re very thankful that Gov. Christie and his administration understand the importance of food assistance benefits and D-SNAP at a time when so many New Jersey residents are struggling to get back on their feet,” LaTourette said.
For more information on where to apply or for eligibility requirements, please visit [http://www.njsnap.org] www.njsnap.org.