Thousands of Massachusetts SNAP recipients to see increase in benefits
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - People receiving SNAP food assistance in the state will see a 12-percent increase in benefits starting October 1.
The Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance said that over 500,000 households in Massachusetts will feel the positive effects of the rate increase, which will give households an average monthly increase of $25 to $30.
Brittany Mangini, associate commissioner for food security and nutrition programs with DTA, said the rate increase comes at a time where food prices are reaching record highs.
“This is something that happens annually, which is always great when everyone stops and takes a pause and looks around at the reality that folks face when they’re at the grocery store or purchasing things in general,” Mangini noted.
One local food bank is glad to see a rate increase. Jennie Adamczyk, executive director of Providence Ministries, told Western Mass News that the COVID-19 pandemic, paired with rising prices, has created a massive influx of people who are food insecure.
“Our numbers had been steady before the pandemic, about 150 to 200 people. Those numbers shot up through the pandemic and they really have not gone down again,” Adamczyk noted.
Adamczyk hopes the money from SNAP will help households combat high grocery prices.
“It’s definitely something that they bring up, that they just can’t afford grocery prices. It’s not just the people on benefits. We’re seeing people that are working middle-class people,” Adamczyk explained.
Mangini told us the rate increase is one of the biggest she’s seen while working at the DTA. She said it’s a step in the right direction as the cost of living in Massachusetts continues to rise.
“I think it’s a good thing to see the increase match the reality that folks face. We’re happy that families will benefit from this year’s COLA [Cost of Living Adjustment],” Mangini said.
Mangini said those who think they are eligible for benefits have an easy way to find out. You can visit their website at dtaconnect.com and answer their four screening questions and if eligible, apply online.
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