Thousands to receive SNAP food stamp benefits extension during virus crisis

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Thousands to receive SNAP food stamp benefit extension during virus crisis

People shopping in Rio Grande Valley HEB store.

Texas Health and Human services waived interview and work requirements for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program food benefits allowing all current benefits to automatically renew.

It is in an effort to keep food sources available during the COVID-19 public health emergency. This change is particularly important for able-bodied adults without dependents known as ABAWD.

Before the waiver change took effect, ABAWD clients between ages 18-years-old and 49-years-old without children would have to balance social distancing, shelter-in-place orders while job searching throughout the community to gain a limited three months access of SNAP benefits.

However, the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities temporarily dismissed those requirements on Saturday.

Workforce Solutions officials say there are essential jobs available for all clients in need of work.

“Dollar General, HEB, Wal-mart need stockers, need delivery drivers, as a response to the current situation at hand. I think as a community we are doing very well in making sure that we are taking care of one another by providing these opportunities because there are people who need to work,” said Texas Workforce Solutions of McAllen, Mike Gonzalez.

The organization is offering virtual services for face-to-face interviews and other resources to ensure employment opportunities are readily available for job seekers in need of employment during the pandemic.

Workforce Solutions officials are encouraging people in need of “unemployment insurance benefits” to contact the Texas Workforce Commission and not the Texas Workforce Solutions. Texas Workforce Commission handles unemployment claims and Texas Workforce Solutions handles employment opportunity.

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