FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 16, 2021
CONTACT: Bob Wheaton, 517-241-2112
LANSING, Mich. - Approximately 350,000 Michigan families will continue to have access to additional food assistance benefits during March as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced today.
Michigan previously approved the additional food assistance beginning in March 2020 - and now that is being extended for March 2021 with approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service.
"Michigan has been a national leader in making sure families can put food on the table during COVID, and we must continue to ensure that no Michigander goes hungry during this challenging time," said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. "I am pleased to work with our federal partners to continue supporting 350,000 families through March."
Eligible clients will see additional food assistance benefits on their Bridge Card March 20 to 30. Additional benefits will be loaded onto Bridge Cards as a separate payment from the assistance that is provided earlier in the month.
"MDHHS remains dedicated to helping families afford groceries. We are all in this together as we combat COVID-19," said MDHHS Director Elizabeth Hertel. "I promise we will continue to work tirelessly on behalf of Michiganders who are in need."
Nearly 1.3 million people in Michigan receive federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits through the state's Food Assistance Program.
Households eligible for Food Assistance Program benefits will receive additional benefits in March to bring all current SNAP cases to the maximum monthly allowance for that group size. This change only applies to customers not currently receiving the maximum benefit amount. The 350,000 households that receive increased benefits represent close to 50 percent of the more than 707,000 Michigan households that received food assistance in January. The remaining households already receive the maximum benefit.
Below are the maximum allowable benefits for SNAP customers based on their respective household size:
The federal government is providing additional funding to states for food assistance under House Resolution 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
Eligible families do not need to re-apply to receive the additional benefits. People who receive food assistance can check their benefits balance on their Michigan Bridge Card by going online to www.michigan.gov/MIBridges or calling a consumer service representative toll-free at 888-678-8914. They can ask questions about the additional benefits by calling or emailing their caseworker.
Customer service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Spanish and Arabic service is available. If you are deaf, deafblind, or hard of hearing or speech-impaired, call the Michigan Relay Center at 7-1-1.
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