SNAP Coalition meeting 2/27 & Important SNAP Updates and Trainings!


We hope you are enjoying the last few weeks of February. If you have kids on school vacation and you are reading this email, we hope you are at least taking some time off to enjoy the brisk sunshine!


SNAP Coalition - Tuesday, February 27th - 10 to 11:30 AM

The next SNAP Coalition meeting is Tuesday, February 27th  Here’s the Zoom link.  


The AGENDA will include:

  • Federal updates, including Child Tax Credit advocacy and SNAP advocacy. 

  • State FY25 Budget Updates - time to lift up top priorities! Please keep the noise opposing the Governor’s cuts to DTA cash benefits!

  • State SNAP program - updates and sharing on what you are hearing (see resources below)

  • Skimming SNAP theft - updates and replacement procedures 

  • SNAP access barriers - Assistance Line, document processing delays. 

  • Other issues/updates


SNAP Advocacy Resources:

We’ve got some updated items for your advocacy:


URGENT Reminder: Protect SNAP from skimming/phishing

There has been a significant increase in SNAP theft. 

  • Please continue to urge SNAP households to be cautious and vigilant, and report questionable texts or phone calls immediately to DTA. 

  • It is extremely important that households change their PIN as often as they are able to (ideally at least before SNAP is put on their account) and that families DO NOT REPLY or click on any links in texts, emails, or phone calls that are not actually from DTA. 

    • DTA tells families: “Never provide your personal information, EBT card number, or Personal Identification Number (PIN) to unidentified callers, or to a link provided via text or email.”

Information on how to get replacement benefits when SNAP is stolen, how to protect SNAP from skimming theft, and more on DTA’s FAQ here. Let us know what you are seeing. 


USDA Guidance on Right to File Minimal SNAP Application 

On February 15th, USDA Food and Nutrition Service issued guidance reminding states that households have the right to file a SNAP application with minimal information: just their name, address and the date. While states obviously need more household information and proofs to approve the SNAP case, the filing date kicks off the process and ensures eligible households receives retroactive SNAP as of the date of their application. For example, a very low income family of 3 that’s eligible for the $766/mo max SNAP would be missing out on $25/day in SNAP if the application filing is delayed  


We strongly encourage community organizations assisting households to not delay filing a SNAP application due to lack of additional information or proofs. (Note that right now the DTAConnect application requires some additional elements - we hope that DTA will make some changes to the DTAConnect portal in the coming months to align with the federal rules). Please let us know if you have questions or see barriers applying for SNAP. Applying for SNAP is a basic right! 


National Consumer Law Center Utility Rights Training - Feb 29th

Join NCLC for their full Utility Consumer Rights Course, from 10 to 11:30 AM. This training is geared towards advocates and front-line social service workers who assist low-income Massachusetts consumers. NCLC will cover the eligibility requirements for utility discounts; how to prevent service from being shut off; how to restore service if it has been terminated; and how to manage past due balances. Registration required - register HERE.

Upcoming Basic Benefits Trainings in February and March

Just a reminder that our annual Basic Benefit Training - hosted by Mass Continuing Legal Education - is continuing in 2024. (MLCE is located at 10 Winter Place, Boston and also provides a virtual option). Here’s the upcoming trainings for February and March.