BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) – Federal funding has been approved for a second month’s worth of DSNAP benefits for Louisiana flood victims already receiving the assistance.
The Food and Nutrition Service program will provide the benefits for the “11 most severely affected parishes” from the flooding that began on August 11, 2016. Those parishes include:
- East Baton Rouge
- St. Helena
- St. Landry
- St. Martin
- West Feliciana
There will not be a second round of sign-ups for those not already participating in the assistance program, according to a spokesperson for Louisiana’s Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). DSNAP recipients who were issued EBT cards after the August flooding will automatically have their benefits loaded onto their cards no later than October 18.
“Two months after the devastating and historic floods across South Louisiana, there are tens of thousands of families in these parishes still trying to get back on their feet. We’re thankful that the federal government recognizes the need for additional assistance for those who are living in the hardest hit parishes. Our people are working hard every day to restore their lives, and it is critical that we continue to help them with some of the basic necessities. Another month of benefits will help ease some of their worries, and hopefully lessen their burdens as they continue to recover and rebuild,” said Governor John Bel Edwards.
A total of 122,000 households in 21 parishes received DSNAP benefits after the flooding, totaling $48.9 million. Funds distributed to households receiving regular SNAP benefits total another $30.9 million.
For those parishes hardest hit and receiving a second month of benefits, DCFS estimates 105,689 households will receive $42 million in benefits, with 72,002 ongoing SNAP households receiving $11 million in benefits. Recipients have up to a full year to used their benefits, after which, they will expire.
DCFS encourage those not receiving DSNAP to instead look to food banks for help or to consider signing up for regular SNAP.
DSNAP is funded by the federal government. The state is responsible for half of the costs of administering the benefits.
Stores that are licensed to accept SNAP benefits have been approved to continue to take regular SNAP benefits in exchange for hot foods and foods intended to be consumed on the retailer’s premises. This will continue until October 21, 2016.
“We encourage all SNAP authorized retail food stores in the State of Louisiana to post a special notice in the store letting SNAP customers know that they can continue to use their SNAP EBT benefits to purchase hot foods and, where practical, may remain on the premises to consume those foods,” states a press release.
DSNAP recipients in the eligible 11 parishes can obtain replacement disaster EBT cards at any of the following locations:
- Acadia Parish – 300 E. First St., Crowley, LA 70526
- Ascension Parish – 1078 E. Worthy Road, Gonzales, LA 70737
- East Baton Rouge Parish – 1919 North Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA 70806
- Lafayette Parish – 825 Kaliste Saloom Road, Brandywine Complex VI, Lafayette, LA 70508
- Livingston Parish – 28446 Charley Watts Road, Livingston, LA 70754
- St. Landry Parish – 6069 I-49 S. Service Road, Opelousas, LA 70570
- Tangipahoa Parish – 1211 NW Central Avenue, Amite, LA 70422
For questions or additional information, visit the DCFS website at www.dcfs.la.gov, or call 1-888-524-3578.