Families to receive more food assistance

MARQUETTE — All Michigan families who are eligible for food assistance benefits are receiving an additional monthly payment this month in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced on Wednesday.

More than 1.25 million Michiganders in nearly 700,000 households will receive additional food assistance benefits.

Eligible clients will see additional food assistance benefits on their Bridge Cards from Oct. 23 through Nov. 1. These benefits will be loaded onto Bridge Cards as a separate payment from the assistance that is provided earlier in the month.

“Helping families address food insecurity during the pandemic is one of MDHHS’s top priorities,” said Lewis Roubal, senior deputy director for opportunity, in a statement. “With help from our federal partners, we are helping families put more nutritious food on the table.”

Some Michiganders began receiving additional food assistance in April 2020 after the beginning of the pandemic that started the month before. In May 2021, all eligible households began getting extra monthly benefits, MDHHS said. Federal approval is necessary every month.

All households eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program receive an increase of at least $95 monthly, even if they are already receiving the maximum payment or are close to that amount, MDHHS said. Households that received over $95 to bring them to the maximum payment for their group size will continue to receive that larger amount.

The maximum allowable benefits for SNAP customers based on their respective household size are: one person, $250; two persons, $459; three persons, $658; four persons, $835; five persons, $992; six persons, $1,190; seven persons, $1,316; and eight persons, $1,504.

The federal government is providing additional funding to states for food assistance under House Resolution 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.

Eligible families do not need to reapply to receive the additional benefits. People who receive food assistance can check their benefits balance on their Michigan Bridge Cards by visiting www.michigan.gov/MIBridges or calling a consumer service representative toll-free at 888-678-8914. They can ask questions about the additional benefits by calling or emailing their caseworkers.

NMU numbers updated

According to the Northern Michigan University reporting dashboard at https://nmu.edu/safe-on-campus/dashboard, as of Wednesday there were 13 total active COVID cases at NMU. The semester total was 67.

The reported on-campus vaccination rate showed 75.7% said they were vaccinated while 24.3% indicated they had not.


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