CalFresh Expands Program to Older Adults and People with Disabilities

A pre-school age girl helps her dad pick out veggies in the produce section at the grocery store. He is holding her next to the produce and she is picking out eggplant.

According to the California Department of Social Services, nearly 4 million Californians a month – half of them children – receive an average of $130 in CalFresh (also known as federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)) benefits on a debit card to purchase food at grocery stores and farmers’ markets.

As of June 1, a major change in State law known as “Reversing SSI Cash-Out” will now allow hundreds of thousands of persons with disabilities (including those with intellectual and developmental disabilities receiving regional center funded services) and seniors eligible for the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) / State Supplemental Payment program (SSP) to apply and be considered for eligibility for benefits. With this change, eligible seniors and people with disabilities will be able to receive a monthly CalFresh food benefit to help meet their basic needs, with no loss to their SSI/SSP benefit.

Some who are part of households already receiving CalFresh food benefits may receive new state funded Supplemental Nutrition Benefits (SNB) or Transitional Nutrition Benefits (TNB) to avoid any loss in food benefit. Persons who are receiving Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants (CAPI) benefits will receive a $10 per person grant increase.

Employment training services, and healthy living programs are also available in the CalFresh Program.