Disaster food stamps are now available for people impacted by Hurricane Isaac in nine parishes. Here is the news release from the Governor's office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness:
The Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) announced today that the United States Department of Agriculture's Food and Nutrition Service has approved the Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (DSNAP) in nine parishes -- Ascension, Jefferson, Lafourche, Livingston, Orleans, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. John the Baptist and St. Tammany.
The program, formerly called Disaster Food Stamps, provides food assistance for eligible households who do not receive regular SNAP benefits and who need help buying groceries due to lost income or damages following a disaster.
To help expedite the application process, individuals should pre-apply for DSNAP prior to Wednesday either online at www.dcfs.la.gov/preapply or www.getagameplan.org or by calling 1-888-LAHELP-U (888-524-3578) between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. When applying by phone, callers should select the appropriate language and then select options 3 and 3.
The following information is required for DSNAP pre-application:
- Names, Social Security Numbers and Dates of Birth for each household member;
- Address and Parish where you currently live;
- Monthly income for each household member; and
- All liquid resources for each household member (cash on hand, checking, savings).
Individuals in the approved parishes who pre-applied for DSNAP must visit a DSNAP issuance site at a time to be determined to verify their identity and information to decide final eligibility before receiving benefit cards. Pre-applying does not guarantee benefits and pre-applicants must go to a DSNAP site to complete the process.
Regular SNAP households DO NOT need to pre-apply. Households that receive regular SNAP benefits in parishes where DSNAP has been activated will automatically have additional DSNAP benefits added to their Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards if they are not already receiving the maximum allotment for their household size.
DCFS will open DSNAP sites beginning on Wednesday, September 5 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at sites soon to be announced in each of the parishes. The sites will be open for a seven day period for applicants on a staggered alphabet schedule that will be released when sites are announced. Once finalized, site locations will be posted at www.dcfs.la.gov and will be available by calling 211 or 1-888-LAHELP-U.
Applicants may name an Authorized Representative to go to a DSNAP site on their behalf. Accommodations will be made for the elderly and those with disabilities to reduce on-site wait times.
An estimated 288,155 households could be eligible for DSNAP benefits in the nine declared parishes. Another 115,262 households who already receive regular SNAP benefits will have the disaster benefits automatically added to their EBT cards. Only households who resided in the nine parishes at the time of the disaster are eligible for DSNAP.
Benefit amounts for eligible families are:
|Household Size||Household Benefit Allotment|
|Each additional member||$150|