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Just Thoughts is the blog of the Empire Justice Center, New York’s statewide, multi-issue, multi-strategy public interest law firm focused on changing the “systems” within which poor and low income families live. Here staff and guest authors will share stories, announcements and perspectives on timely issues related to our work.

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D-SNAP update – New York City and Long Island

Issue Area: Public Benefits

New York City:  The Human Resources Administration (HRA) has gotten approval to operate a Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP), for one week beginning on Wednesday, December 12th.    D-SNAP will help thousands of New York City’s Hurricane Sandy survivors buy food.  However, due to limitations in the program, not all needy disaster victims will have access to this 100% federally funded food assistance benefit.  Advocates are calling on HRA, OTDA and USDA to expand New York City’s D-SNAP

Long Island:   To date, neither Nassau nor Suffolk County DSS has made a formal request to operate D-SNAP.  Don Friedman from our Central Islip office is part of an ad hoc coalition of advocates aiming to make D-SNAP a reality on Long Island.  The coalition sent letters, signed by 40 organizations, to the Nassau and Suffolk County social services  commissioners  asking them to request D-SNAP immediately, and developed a fact sheet outlining the benefits of D-SNAP.  The coalition estimates that D-SNAP could bring over $13 million in federal funds to local food retailers across Long Island, and help put food on the table for 100,000 low-income households recovering from Hurricane Sandy.  For more information, contact Don Friedman at

Tags: HRA | Superstorm Sandy | D-SNAP | food stamps | Hurricane Sandy | OTDA

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