The Online Resource for Massachusetts Poverty Law Advocates

FoodSNAP's Blog

The latest information on SNAP/ Food Stamp advocacy in Massachusetts.

Contacts: DTA Client Assistance Coordinators and Domestic Violence Specialists

Fri, 08/12/2016 - 12:51pm -- FoodSNAP

Attached are two contact lists for DTA Client Assistance Coordinators and Domestic Violence Specialists.

Client Assistance Coordinators:

Every DTA office has at least one Client Assistance Coordinators (CACs), with 2 in the larger offices. They are supervisors who have a reduced caseload in order to focus on helping clients with disabilities.  They can help with accommodation requests, discuss DTA rules and disability related barriers, and other disability protections, such as good cause or disability exemptions. 

SNAP Alert: DTA automatic interview calls- change starts this Thurs, 8/11!

Wed, 08/10/2016 - 2:31pm -- FoodSNAP

Change to DTA Interview Calls

DTA is making a change to how interview calls are made in SNAP cases. This change is scheduled to happen this Thursday, August 11

Clients applying for SNAP are required to have an interview. Clients doing a recertification are also required to have an interview -- unless everyone in the household is over 60 or disabled. Clients doing an interim report should not have an interview unless something in the interim report is questionable. 

Utilities Discount letter mailed in error to DTA clients by Columbia Gas

Thu, 08/04/2016 - 12:36pm -- FoodSNAP

Below is a message from DTA regarding a letter erroneously mailed to DTA clients by Columbia Gas. Columbia Gas and DTA are taking steps to inform the clients sent this erroneous letter, but please reach out if you have clients who contact you with issues or questions. 

Attached is a copy of the letter sent.

From: Mangini, Brittany (DTA)
Sent: Thursday, August 04, 2016 10:24 AM
Subject: Utilities Discount letter mailed in error to DTA clients by Columbia Gas
Importance: High

Dear SNAP Outreach Providers,

2016/2017 MLRI Basic Benefits Training Series - 11 Training Sessions with first one starting September 20th

Tue, 07/26/2016 - 1:46pm -- FoodSNAP

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute (MLRI) and Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. (MCLE) present a series of trainings every year for legal, social, health services, and community advocates who assist low- and moderate-income individuals and families. Each session includes substantive materials and is led by expert advocates from legal services programs throughout the state. The 2016-2017 series covers 11 different topics (see below). Also attached is a PDF of the training events.

Location:

SNAP Coalition tomorrow; Initial Success on Key Veto Overrides but MEFAP Needs your Support; SNAP Press on Military Service, on Junk Food Bans

Mon, 07/25/2016 - 1:56pm -- FoodSNAP

1. Veto override updates:

TAFDC cash assistance:

On the GOOD news front, both the House and Senate overrode the Governor's TAFDC vetoes which totaled almost $24M in cuts! This PROTECTS the full TAFDC clothing allowance and STOPS the proposal to cut TAFDC benefits by counting the SSI of disabled children or disabled parents as income to the rest of the TAFDC family.

Please Urge your Rep to Seek OVERIDE of Gov's plan to cut TAFDC for 8, 500 families where a member gets SSI

Thu, 07/21/2016 - 6:21pm -- FoodSNAP

The alert below is from Deborah Harris, MLRI. PLEASE EMAIL, TWEET or CALL your House Member tomorrow !

Check out Hester Prynne's commentary on Governor's veto of language to protect low income families with disabled members: https://hesterprynne.net/2016/07/21/field-notes-from-the-state-budget-gov-targets-the-disabled/

ABAWDs and CORIs - How you can Help Your Client Regain Temporary SNAP Eligibility

Tue, 07/19/2016 - 4:41pm -- FoodSNAP

We've heard from a number of community organizations that one of the biggest barriers in assisting low income individuals keep or regain their SNAP benefits through employment or community service is past criminal history. This was evident in a number of the appeal decisions MLRI reviewed, as well as in stories from community organizations who report that the individual's "criminal offender record information" (CORI) is surfacing as a significant barrier in doing complying with the work rules.

Boston Herald re Gov's veto of language barring Admin from counting SSI for TAFDC

Thu, 07/14/2016 - 10:46am -- FoodSNAP

Veto override may be taken up today. Please call your State Representative and Speaker DeLeo. Ask them to take up the override of the Governor's veto and protect families with disabled members.

See Boston Herald article: Advocates rip cuts in disability funding

http://www.bostonherald.com/news/local_coverage/2016/07/advocates_rip_cuts_in_disability_funding

SNAP and the 3-Month Time Limit in Massachusetts: A Summary of SNAP ABAWD Terminations from Appeal Decisions and Community Group Referrals

Wed, 07/13/2016 - 3:26pm -- FoodSNAP

MLRI recently received from the Division of Hearings a batch of redacted appeal decisions involving the ABAWDs terminated from SNAP benefits. (The federal SNAP regulations, 7 CFR 273.15 (q)(5) requires states to keep a public docket of appeal decisions, as do the DTA Division of Hearings regulations at 106 CMR 343.130.) ABAWD = Able Bodied without Dependent. For more on the 3 month time limit, go here: http://www.masslegalservices.org/ABAWD

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