USDA granting February SNAP benefits early

SOUTH BEND, Ind.--- If the government shut down continues, food assistance programs will be at risk, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

The USDA asked states to grant recipients funds earlier than usual. According to a USDA press release, the funds are being given out early to protect access to SNAP for February.

Friday it was announced that February SNAP benefits will be released in advance on Saturday, January 19, 2019 to about 585,000 people in Indiana.

SNAP recipients are being advised to budget since they will not get the benefit assistance in February. People in the community are worried about the impact the government shutdown is having on their fellow Hoosier’s that need the most help.

“As a former and current volunteer at food pantries I know we’re going to be more in need of,” said former veteran and Indiana resident, Michael Ruelas. “And it’s going to make things tougher for those that are already struggling.”

The USDA press release states that the FSSA’S Division of Family resources says that any Indiana resident that has a pending application, benefits re-determination, or reported case changes must submit any documentation by  Monday, January 14, 2019 to receive benefits if proven eligible. 

The release also mentions that any applications or cases in progress after January 18, 2019 may not receive February benefits.

It is advised that SNAP recipients budget these funds to the best of their ability since it’s not clear what will happen to the funds in months ahead.

During this time of uncertainty, Chivo’s Pizza is providing 50 percent off large pizza’s and appetizers for government workers.  Owner Tony Pedraza said it’s the least he can do in this time of need.

“Something as little as 50 percent off a large pizza and an app can go a long way for them, especially not being able to receive a paycheck this week,” said Pedraza. “So, couldn’t imagine not being able to bring money home to my family, especially if I worked for it.” 

The discount will go on for one month as for right now. A valid I.D. with proof that patrons work for the government is required. The discount applies to walk-ins as well as delivery.

For more information about SNAP benefits click here:

Share this article: