Extended SNAP Benefits, Child Care for Essential Workers, Wage Hike for Direct Caregivers of Disabled, Support Person for the Disabled in Hospitals

TRENTON, NJ — Here are several coronavirus-related updates from the state Department of Human Resources:

Many New Jerseyans who receive food assistance through the state’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) will receive additional benefits in May to help address critical food needs related to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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An additional $36 million will be provided to about 214,000 New Jersey households in May. The supplemental benefits will be directly loaded to SNAP recipients’ Families First EBT cards as part of their regular monthly payment.

For more information on SNAP, visit www.NJHelps.org.

The state will continue to help pay for child care for essential employees through at least the end of May, based on the following rates per week per child:

  • Infant: $450.35
  • Toddler: $415.70
  • Preschool: $415.70
  • School-age: $336.00

Gov. Phil Murphy’s ordered the closure of all child care centers, except for those on federal property or military bases, family-based centers caring for five or fewer children and any centers that register to exclusively provide emergency child care services to essential personnel. 

Following a registration process, more than 500 childcare agencies statewide have been certified to provide emergency child care services.

Essential employees include health care workers, law enforcement personnel, individuals employed at emergency child care centers, staff working for entities that provide essential social services, certain government workers and certain “critical workers” at essential retail businesses. 

Essential employees who wish to utilize emergency care services must complete an online registration form available at www.childcarenj.gov.

Direct support professionals who care for adult individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities living in group homes and supervised apartments will receive a temporary $3 per hour wage hike for three months.

The Murphy administration will use $24 million in state and federal resources to fund the wage increases, which take effect May 1. For more information, visit the Human Services website at nj.gov/humanservices/index.shtml

The administration also announced new guidance requiring hospitals to allow a designated support person to accompany an individual with a disability during a hospitalization, despite other restrictions on visitors at this time.  The designated support person may be a family member, personal care assistant or another disability service provider and is subject to screening by the hospital and required to be asymptomatic for COVID-19.

For more information, visit the Division of Disability Services website at https://www.state.nj.us/humanservices/dds/home/.

 

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