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FoodSNAP's Blog

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

Here's some important events and resource materials for your anti-hunger work:

Upcoming FS/SNAP Training on 10/13: ABCD and MLRI are hosting a training October 13th on the nuts and bolts of the food stamp/SNAP program. Attached is a flier announcing the event and registration information (through ABCD).

Below is an email communication from Commissioner Kehoe sent earlier today announcing the closing of two local DTA offices - North Adams and Milford. If your organization works with low income clients living in the Central and Western Mass communities served by these two DTA offices, it is important to discuss with DTA ways to ensure clients continue to have access to DTA staff and services. The Commissioner's email indicates that DTA is going to explore satellite offices in these two areas.

I. MLRI's Annual "Basic Benefits Training" Series:

A big kudos to DTA Commissioner Julia Kehoe and her staff for pursuing and winning this huge federal grant for Western Mass! Thanks also to Coalition members who submitted letters of support.

Attached is a brief DTA description of the Healthy Initiatives Pilot proposal as submitted by DTA last April, which gives you a good description of the Massachusetts HIP proposal (elements of which may have changed in the final approval). And here's today's Boston Globe story announcing the grant award: Food Stamp Discount for Buying Produce (Boston Globe article no longer available)

Thanks all for a terrific meeting on Tuesday - banner attendance on a hot July day!  Thanks also to Margaret Monsell of MLRI for her presentation on the nuts and bolts of UI including how the federal Tier system and extended benefits work and what the recent federal extension means. Below is the press release from the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development. The UI checks for eligible persons will go out imminently !! 
 

1. Coalition TOMORROW: This is a REMINDER that the July Coalition meeting (and last one til September) is tomorrow, July 27th from 10 to Noon at St Francis House in Boston. Among other items, the agenda will include a presentation on the recent UI extension just passed in Congress, basic info on UI claims and extensions, and a discussion of the USDA-approved waiver for expedited FS/SNAP for UI terminated households not eligible for further extensions.

The next regularly scheduled Food SNAP Coalition meeting is Tuesday, July 27th from 10 to 12 at St Francis House in Boston. 39 Boylston Street, 6th Floor. This is the LAST meeting until September.

The Coalition agenda will include:

1) Social Networking resources to reach low income community college students:

1) Meet and Greet with our New USDA Food and Nutrition Service Regional Administrator, James Arena-DeRosa:  The Food SNAP Coalition has a meeting scheduled with New England Regional Administrator James Arena DeRosa on Tuesday, June 22nd at 2 PM at the FNS Regional Office (10 Causeway Street in Boston - right near North Station).  All Food SNAP Coalition members are invited, BUT I need to know if you plan to attend so that I can alert the NERO FNS Office.

As noted in an earlier email, Tuesday's Coalition meeting (6/29/2010) will also include a discussion/update about the SNAP Outreach initiative  to implement the FY2011 state budget language.  Here's some background information on the Outreach initiative some important resources.  

1)  SNAP Outreach Initiative:

*  Update on  Mass SNAP Outreach Plan Implementation for coming federal fiscal year (Oct 1, 2010 through Sept 2011):  The following update is from Lauren Arms Ledwith, now of UMass Medical (UMMS):  

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