MY CHILD’S SCHOOL IS CLOSED, AND THEY RECEIVE FREE/REDUCED PRICE BREAKFAST AND LUNCH. HOW WILL THEY BE ABLE TO ACCESS THESE MEALS?
As school wraps up for the summer, districts are transitioning to summer meal distribution programs. This could involve meals being available for pick up at school buildings or centralized locations, or meals being delivered to students. The Federal government has released additional funding to support these programs. Because COVID-19 requires social distancing in order to stop the spread, many school districts are offering these meals for consumption at home instead of allowing students to eat them together at the school building or pickup location. Please check with your child’s school district in order to see what plans the district has in place to continue your child’s access to food.
As part of the CARES Act, the Department of Social Services is issuing additional SNAP benefits to families of children who receive free lunches and families of children who attend Community Eligibility schools, which are schools in which all students receive free lunches due to the high proportion of students who would be financially eligible. The maximum benefit under this program is $420 per eligible child. These will be distributed to eligible families between June and July of 2020. Eligible families already enrolled in SNAP will receive these benefits added to their SNAP balance, while eligible families who do not have SNAP benefits may be issued new SNAP cards. Although this is not part of the regular SNAP program, the benefits may only be used to purchase SNAP-eligible food products.