Florida has been approved to administer a Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer Program (P-EBT) for school children for School Year 2021-2022. Covered months include August 2021 through May 2022.
The needs of families with low income must be a priority as the state decides what steps it will take to lessen the effects of COVID-19. Florida policymakers should adopt proactive COVID-19 policies to protect families who rely on safety net programs to avoid hunger, stay well, and make ends meet. Additionally, they need to keep a keen eye on the state budget projections and work together to identify sustainable revenue sources, and to advocate for state and local federal fiscal aid, to avert cuts that would be devastating to communities still reeling from the health crisis.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicaid, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Reemployment Assistance (RA), and the Special Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) are crucial to keeping struggling Floridians out of poverty during this public health crisis.
FPI and our partners, including the Safety Net Advocacy Coalition (SNAC), have been hard at work keeping the pulse on the state policy response and driving a collective push to protect our state's safety net programs through this crisis. These actions and other safety net policy responses by the state have been compiled by our staff in the Safety Net Policy Tracker.
March 24, 2020: SNAC urges safety net protections and policy changes amid the COVID-19 crisis. FPI and 44 other organizations send a letter to Gov. DeSantis urging him to take immediate steps to bolster the state’s safety net, with 47 specific policy recommendations. So far, the state has taken action on 21 of these policy recommendations.
December 14, 2020: New report sheds light on Florida families and COVID-19 and highlights four areas where families struggle: healthcare, affordable housing, food security and mental health.
March 19, 2021: A Guide to the American Rescue Plan Act outlines how Florida can use ARPA funds to invest in communities.
March 23, 2021: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about P-EBT and updates as new information becomes available.
August 30, 2021: More than 80 organizations signed a letter to Governor Ron DeSantis and Department of Children and Families Secretary Shevaun Harris, asking that the state reconsider bowing out Summer Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program (Summer P-EBT).
October 2021: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Summer P-EBT and updates as new information becomes available.