In response to the COVID-19 public health crisis, the Governor closed all schools in Massachusetts for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. School closures disproportionately impact low-income children who rely on free and reduced-price school meals for adequate nutrition.
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act includes a provision called Pandemic EBT (P-EBT). This is a food benefit for families with school-age children who qualify for free or reduced-price school meals through the federal School Breakfast Program and/or National School Lunch Program. These food benefits are meant to compensate for the value of school lunch and breakfast for each eligible child.
P-EBT can be used anywhere that SNAP EBT benefits are used. These benefits were issued to active DTA households as well as households that do not currently receive DTA benefits but include children who receive free or reduced-price school meals.