WASHINGTON, September 30, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced today that low-income Alabama residents recovering from Hurricane Sally could be eligible for a helping hand from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP).
Secretary Perdue said that households who may not normally be eligible under regular Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) rules may qualify for D-SNAP – if they meet the disaster income limits and have qualifying disaster-related expenses.
“D-SNAP will be critical in our ongoing, on-the-ground food assistance for our neighbors on the Alabama Gulf Coast,” Secretary Perdue said. “USDA is committed to ensuring Alabamians affected by this devastating storm have enough to eat and will be here to help as they recover.”
To be eligible for D-SNAP, a household must live in one of the counties designated by the President for Federal Individual Assistance, have been affected by the disaster, and meet certain D-SNAP eligibility criteria. Eligible households will receive one month of benefits – equal to the maximum amount for a SNAP household of their size – to meet their temporary food needs as they settle back home following the disaster. Alabama will share information about D-SNAP application dates and locations through local media.
The timing of D-SNAP varies with the unique circumstances of each disaster, Perdue said, but always begins after commercial channels of food distribution have been restored and families are able to purchase and prepare food at home. Before operating a D-SNAP, a state must ensure that the proper public information, staffing, and resources are in place.
Although current SNAP households are not eligible for D-SNAP, under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020, USDA has already approved emergency allotments for Alabama. Therefore, ongoing SNAP households will already receive the maximum allotment for their household size for the month of September. Further, USDA previously approved a waiver to allow Alabama to automatically replace a portion of the September benefits and August emergency allotments already provided to SNAP recipients in the counties most severely impacted by the storm.
For more information about Alabama SNAP, residents should call 334-242-1700 or visit dhr.alabama.gov/food-assistance.
Further, USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) continues to provide significant support to Alabama residents as part of its ongoing response to COVID-19. For more information on flexibilities provided to Alabama, visit the FNS COVID-19 Response: Alabama webpage.
USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service administers 15 nutrition assistance programs that leverage American’s agricultural abundance to ensure children and low-income individuals and families have nutritious food to eat. FNS also co-develops the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which provide science-based nutrition recommendations and serve as the cornerstone of federal nutrition policy. Follow us on Twitter at @USDANutrition.
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