Disasters are especially challenging to handle in the midst of COVID-19. Luckily, Federal Nutrition Programs already have resources in place to address the unique needs of this time. Explore below to learn more about about specific state guidance for current disasters and disaster response options from the Federal Nutrition Programs.
Current Disaster Relief
- CaliforniaOn Sept. 3, 2020, FNS approved California’s request to issue SNAP mass replacements to impacted households. This waiver approval allows households to receive replacement of 50 percent of August benefits for 23 zip codes in 12 counties as a result of wildfires and power outages.
- ConnecticutAutomatic mass SNAP benefit replacements (Tropical Storm Isiais)
- IowaUSDA has approved D-SNAP for 10 additional counties hit hard by the recent Derecho and the application process will roll there in waves during the weeks of September 15 and 22. One county had already gotten D-SNAP approval in August.
- LouisianaOn September 11 USDA approved another 2 parishes for Disaster SNAP (D-DNAP) aid to households hard hit by Hurricane Laura, bringing to 18 the total number of parishes in which D-SNAP will be offered.
USDA approves automatic mass replacement benefits for SNAP households hard hit by Laura and D-SNAP for others
Schedule and instructions for Hurricane Laura households to apply for D-SNAP in Louisiana.
In the wake of Hurricane Laura USDA has authorize Louisiana to operate Disaster SNAP (D-SNAP) “for 16 parishes in two phases – one beginning this week and the other next week. Operations will be entirely virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Louisiana will share information about D-SNAP application dates and locations through local media.”
Louisiana SNAP benefits for September were issued early and also can be used to purchase hot prepared foods as Hurricane Laura recovery efforts continue. Louisiana is preparing a request for authority to get Disaster SNAP (D-SNAP) benefits to residents not already participating in SNAP and is already accepting pre registrations for D-SNAP.
- MassachusettsAutomatic mass SNAP benefit replacements (Tropical Storm Isiais)
- New YorkReplacing SNAP benefits (Tropical Storm Isiais)
- North CarolinaOn August 31 USDA granted NC authority to issue automatic mass SNAP replacement benefits to SNAP households in 11 North Carolina counties hard hit by Tropical Storm Isiais.
There are several ways to leverage SNAP resources to aid in disaster recovery.
- Disaster declarations
- Replacement benefits
- D-SNAP flexibilities
- Hot prepared food waivers
- Case processing flexibilities
- Restaurant Meals (Letter from FRAC and restaurant association partners)