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Issue Alert - 03-09-10

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Date:

Sep 30, 2003

Issue Summary:

FAP/Food Stamp recipients who do not meet the requirements for the Non-Cash Recipient (NCR) program, including those in households without a child, may receive up to $50 per month for transportation reimbursement, tools, or clothing in connection with employment or training/education. The Family Independence Agency (FIA) may issue employment support service payments for transportation, clothing, tools, or other expenses for Non Cash Recipients (NCRs) who are not actively participating in a Michigan Works Agency (MWA)-approved activity. FIA also may provide ESS for FIP recipients and NCRs who are participating in MWA-approved activities, if the local MWA and FIA office agree that FIA should make the support service payment, under a local MWA-FIA agreement.

Persons Affected:

FAP/Food Stamp recipients who do not have a job or a job offer of at least 20 hours per week. In some counties, changes will also affect FIP cash assistance recipients who are participating in Work First and Non Cash Recipients (families with children in which the adult has a job or job offer for at least 20 hours work per week).


Background

PEM 232 - Employment Support Services (ESS) for FAP/Food Stamp or Family Independendence Program (FIP) recipients

What's Happening?

Effective October 1, 2003, FIA will be authorized to spend up to $50 per month (increased from $25) for FAP/Food Stamp recipients who do not have a child in the household or who do not qualify as NCRs because they do not have a job or a job offer for 20 hours or more per week. Local FIA and MWAs will have authority to enter into agreements that specify the situatinos in which FIA will provide ESS to individuals who are participating in MWA-approved activities and to NCRs. This allows the agencies to expand the circumstances in which FIA will provide ESS.

What Should Advocates Do?

Get copies of any agreements between FIA and MWA offices regarding ESS for NCRs or FIP recipients participating in MWA-approved activities.Share information about the availability of ESS with FIP recipients and NCRs. Share information about the $50 ESS with Time Limited FAP/Food Stamp recipients who may need transportation or other help in order to meet the 20 hour per week work requirement or in order to participate in volunteer community service work to keep Food Stamps for more than 3 months in a 3 year period.

What Should Clients Do?

Request Employment Support Services such as transportation assistance from both FIA and your local Michigan Works Agency or Work First contractor. Seek legal advice if you have difficulty obtaining employment support services.

Finding Help

Most legal aid and legal services office handle these type of cases, and they do not charge a fee. You can locate the "free" legal services or legal aid office that serves your county on the Michigan LawHelp website (http://www.MI.lawhelp.org) or look in the yellow pages under "attorneys" or call the toll-free lawyer referral number, (800) 968-0738.