Oregon Department of Human Services
Emergency Messages as of 8:44 am, Thu. Aug. 13
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News Releases
Oregon continues sending families pandemic school meal benefits: More than 230,000 students have received benefits in six weeks - 08/13/20

SALEM, OR – Six weeks ago, Oregon received approval to implement Pandemic-EBT (P-EBT) benefits, which provides food benefits for students who lost access to free meals through a school participating in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) when they suddenly closed due to COVID-19. Families may receive up to $384 per eligible child and the actual food benefit amount is based on the date the child became eligible for free or reduced meals at school.

In order to receive the benefits, Oregon school districts must provide the eligibility information to the Department of Education – most have done this. Now, additional data collection efforts are underway for families who applied for free or reduced lunch after schools closed, moved or were not included on initial lists. This work is expected to continue through August and into September.

Will my child receive these additional food benefits?

Where is my school in the process?

How will my family get these benefits?

  • If families currently receive SNAP benefits, they will see the P-EBT benefits on their Oregon Trail Card.
  • Families with an active Oregon Trail Card, including families who previously received Summer EBT benefits, will have the benefits loaded onto this card.
  • Families with no active Oregon Trail card on file will receive one in the mail.
    • Eligible households will receive a letter once benefits are deposited onto the Oregon Trail Card.

What if I haven’t received my benefits or Oregon Trail Card?

“We are asking families to please wait until September 15 to contact us if they haven’t received their benefits or Oregon Trail Card,” requested Dan Haun. “After September 15, we will be able to review individual cases and help any families still waiting. We are working around the clock to make sure families get the assistance they need to help put food on the table.”

Pandemic-EBT is a partnership between the Department of Human Services and the Oregon Department of Education, Child Nutrition Program. Bringing these additional food benefits to families struggling during this pandemic would not be possible without the dedicated work being done in school districts throughout the state to provide eligibility information. This local and statewide collaboration is crucial to making these benefits available.

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Federal action critical to maintaining access to food benefits for Oregonians - 08/11/20

SALEM, OR – The Oregon Department of Human Services on Monday submitted a request to the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Services to continue the ability to waive eligibility interviews in order to allow the department to have flexibility to meet the needs of Oregonians receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits.

The department is seeing a surge in SNAP applications as a result of the July 25 expiration of the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program. Nearly 5,800 Oregonians applied for benefits during the first week in August, which is 37 percent higher when compared to the weeks before the supplemental unemployment payments ended.

The department is anticipating continued increases in new applications at the same time the federal waiver expires and requires current SNAP recipients to recertify their information to keep their benefits.

Current SNAP recipients must re-apply to keep their benefits. Beginning in September, approximately 45,000 Oregonians are expected to re-apply to continue their benefits. The waiver would help the department manage this increasing workload as the increase in both new and continuing applications puts additional strain on the workforce.

“In times of crisis, no Oregonian should have to worry about where they can find food for their family. We need the federal government to take immediate action to provide us the with the flexibility we need to get Oregonians benefits to help them through these challenging times,” said Oregon Governor Kate Brown. “Inaction or delay could have an overwhelming effect on our systems for delivering benefits.”

Due to the uncertainty of whether the waiver will continue, the department is taking steps to mitigate these challenges, including redeploying staff from other areas of the agency to process applications and conducting surge hiring to bring additional staff on board.

Since the pandemic, the department has provided nearly $470 million in food benefits to over 702,000 Oregonians. Until the recent increase in applications, most Oregonians have received benefits within a few days of their application. The average processing time for applications, except for those with zero income, has increased to about 13 days over the past two weeks because of the higher number of applicants.

“While we are doing everything, we can to maintain a level of customer service that Oregonians expect and depend on, it will be increasingly more challenging absent action from the federal government,” said Fariborz Pakseresht, director of the Department of Human Services. “SNAP and other benefits are designed to help people manage through difficult times – we are committed to looking for creative solutions to ensure these benefits are readily available to Oregonians throughout the pandemic.”

Resources

Search for Oregon Department of Human Services eligibility worker jobs:

Learn how to apply for SNAP and other benefits online or by phone at https://www.oregon.gov/DHS/COVID-19/Pages/Home.aspx.

SNAP customers can contact their local Self Sufficiency Program (SSP), Aging and People with Disabilities (APD) or Area Agency on Aging (AAA) office for more information. Find a local office at: oregon.gov/DHS/Offices/Pages/index.aspx

Get help identifying Oregon Department of Human Services programs and resources in your community to meet the needs of older adults and people with disabilities, including home-delivered meals: https://www.adrcoforegon.org/consite/index.php

For other ways to connect with DHS, contact 211info:

  • By calling 2-1-1 from any phone
  • Text your zip code to 898211
  • By email at help@211info.org
  • 211info.org

Find other food resources at needfood.oregon.gov

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Aaron Elkins
Aaron Elkins
Missing child alert -- Missing infant and mother are believed to be at risk (Photo) - 07/30/20

(Salem, Ore.) – Isaiah Moore, an infant born on July 25, 2020, went missing with his mother April Moore and her partner Aaron Elkin from Oregon City after his birth. The Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) believes that Isaiah and his mother are at risk and is searching for them to assess their safety.

Oregon DHS asks the public to help in the effort to find them and to contact 911 or the Oregon Child Abuse Hotline at 1-855-503-SAFE (7233) if they believe they see them. They are believed to be in the Multnomah or Clackamas County areas, they may also be traveling in other areas of Oregon or out of state.

Name: Isaiah Moore
Date of birth: July 25, 2020
Height: Unknown
Weight: Unknown
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children #1397430

Anyone who suspects they have information about the location of Isaiah Moore or his mother April Moore should call 911 or the Oregon Child Abuse Hotline at 1-855-503-SAFE (7233).

Report child abuse to the Oregon Child Abuse Hotline by calling 1-855-503-SAFE (7233).  This toll-free number allows you to report abuse of any child or adult to the Oregon Department of Human Services, 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year.

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Attached Media Files: Aaron Elkins , April Moore , Isaiah Moore
Oregonians will continue to receive increased food benefits in August - 07/28/20

The Oregon Department of Human Services has received approval by the federal Food and Nutrition Service to continue in August to provide increased food benefits and waive the interview requirement for new applicants – making it faster and easier for Oregonians to access benefits.

This will result in an additional $30 million to eligible Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients in August 2020.

“As the pandemic continues, access to food has worsened greatly,” said Self-Sufficiency Programs Deputy Director Claire Seguin. “Providing another month of emergency assistance will help ease the threat of chronic hunger in Oregon.”

SNAP households will automatically receive the additional allotment in the same way they receive their current benefits. For most customers this is an EBT card. The additional benefit amount will be disbursed on the schedule below to all eligible SNAP households.
 

Month

Day

Description of household receiving emergency allotment

August

11

Current SNAP households not receiving the SNAP maximum allotment

29

New SNAP customers who did not receive the August 11 allotment and are not receiving the maximum benefit

No additional action is needed from Oregonians already enrolled in SNAP. The increase brings all households to the maximum SNAP benefit. Households that already receive the maximum benefit will not receive any additional benefits.

The table below shows the maximum SNAP benefits based on the number of eligible people in the household

Household size

Max SNAP benefit

1

$194

2

$355

3

$509

4

$646

5

$768

Each additional person

+$146

This allotment will not permanently change a household’s monthly benefit amount. It is a temporary supplement to help during the current health crisis. The Department of Human Services will not be sending individual notices to households about the emergency allotments.

In addition, Oregon received approval to continue to waive the requirement to complete an interview for new SNAP applicants. This change will allow us to process applications faster and better serve those Oregonians hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Staff will still reach out to new applicants to offer additional resources, explain requirements and answer questions.

Questions?

Learn how to apply for SNAP and other benefits online or by phone at https://www.oregon.gov/DHS/COVID-19/Pages/Home.aspx.

SNAP customers can contact their local SSP or AAA office for more information. Find a local office at: oregon.gov/DHS/Offices/Pages/index.aspx

For other ways to connect with DHS, contact 211info:

  • By calling 2-1-1 from any phone
  • Text your zip code to 898211
  • By email at help@211info.org
  • 211info.org

Find other food resources at https://oregonhunger.org/covid-19/.

Every Child and Department of Human Services expand My NeighbOR initiative to meet needs for Oregon families -- today - 07/27/20

Salem, Ore. -- Every Child’s My NeighbOR, a statewide initiative that launched in March to help meet the pressing needs of foster families and youth in foster care, is expanding to help more Oregon families. My NeighbOR will now invite community members to also meet urgent needs for families caring for children before they enter foster care and once children have returned home. Every Child works in partnership with the Oregon Department of Human Services. 

“While the work continues to recruit more loving foster families in Oregon and to support and appreciate foster parents to improve retention, we know that outcomes for children are improved when children can remain safely at home. This effort aligns with the work of Child Welfare to expand community collaboration and find upstream solutions as we build a strong child safety system in Oregon,” Child Welfare program director Rebecca Jones Gaston said.

To safely slow the tide of children into foster care and to stabilize families’ post-reunification, Every Child is growing My NeighbOR to mobilize the community to meet the emergency and tangible needs of families of origin involved with Child Welfare, beginning today. Families of origin include those who have an open Child Welfare case and those who have been reunified with their child.

“When COVID-19 hit, Every Child launched My NeighbOR to meet emergency needs for Oregon’s vulnerable children and foster families. It worked. You stepped up. Launching today, we are expanding to serve more than 13,000 children who are at risk of entering foster care or who are currently in care,” Ben Sand, CEO for The Contingent, Every Child’s parent organization, said.  

 

Close to 2,000 Oregonians have already stepped forward through My NeighbOR to help foster youth and their families with necessities such as groceries, diapers, cleaning supplies, baby equipment, beds, furniture and children’s clothing. Other helpful items have included strollers, sporting and outdoor equipment, and educational resources.   

 

When foster families, youth or families involved with Child Welfare need assistance they can connect with My NeighbOR through their caseworker or, in many counties, may directly make requests online. And, people who want to help meet these needs can connect with Every Child’s My NeighbOR online.

Every Child’s My NeighbOR originally launched March 23 to help meet urgent needs of foster families and youth in foster care. Community networks meant to care for those in foster care, foster families and now families of origin have been challenged and taxed with growing needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you want to meet a need for these Oregon families and children, please visit https://everychildoregon.org/myneighbor/.

Grants Pass residents can apply for financial benefits in more ways - 07/27/20

Salem, OR–Beginning on August 3, Oregonians who live in Grants Pass can apply for medical, cash, childcare and food benefits online at one.oregon.gov, over the phone at 1-800-699-9075 (TTY 711) or in person at either the Aging and People with Disabilities (APD) or Self-Sufficiency Programs (SSP) office in Grants Pass.

This new convenience is a joint effort between the Oregon Department of Human Services and the Oregon Health Authority to upgrade the state’s medical eligibility system, called OregONEligibility, or ONE.

The upgrade is part of a larger project to make it easier and safer for Oregonians to apply for health and human services benefits. On July 6, the first phase of the project was successfully completed when online accounts from the Oregon Health Plan were moved to the upgraded ONE system.

Grants Pass was chosen as the first area to offer medical, cash, childcare and food benefits through the upgraded system. This is a significant change, and, as a result, there may be longer call wait times and other disruptions in the initial weeks following this transition. We appreciate the public’s patience as we implement this improved way of accessing benefits.

The ONE system will continue to be upgraded, in phases, through February 2021. Over the next several months, Oregonians in other parts of the state will gain access to the same conveniences as those in Grants Pass. Starting September 8, 2020, all Oregonians will be able to apply for cash, childcare, food and medical benefits with a single online application. Once the system is fully upgraded, they will also have the option to apply for any of these programs over the phone or in person at any local Aging and People with Disabilities, Area Agency on Aging or Self-Sufficiency Programs office that provides those benefits.

“We want Oregonians to lead healthy, independent lives. It is exciting that Oregonians who live in Grants Pass can apply for benefits at either the APD or SSP office. We are grateful to our employees and partners who helped us reach this milestone and look forward to the day when Oregonians across the state will have more ways to apply for financial benefits,” said DHS Director Fariborz Pakseresht.

Please visit the DHS Benefits and Assistance page to learn more about the programs available to qualifying Oregonians.

Long-term care facilities permitted to offer outdoor visitation with safeguards - 07/20/20

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon’s licensed long-term care providers may begin providing limited outdoor visitation for residents if the facility develops a plan to adhere to required safeguards to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Following the safety prerequisites  ?  including health screenings, face coverings, physical distancing and limits on the number of visitors  ?  is mandatory as Oregon continues to experience an increase in outbreaks at long-term care facilities. While visits with family and friends are essential to well-being, they also create significant risk, not only for the individual who is seeing a loved one, but for everyone who lives and works in that care facility.

The Department of Human Services outdoor visitation policy applies to all facilities licensed by the Office of Aging and People with Disabilities including nursing, assisted living, residential and memory care facilities as well as all adult foster homes. Facilities that are currently coping with COVID-19 cases, or suspected cases, may not offer outside visitation until DHS determines that the outbreak has resolved. All current indoor visitation restrictions issued in March remain in place regardless of the reopening plan status of the county where the facility is located; however, residents are free to leave and return to their facility if following all public health guidance.

“We hope this policy provides some relief to residents, their family members and friends who we know have suffered extreme hardship as a result of visitation restrictions required during the pandemic. Balancing resident safety with the essential need to have contact with family and friends is challenging as COVID-19 presents life-threatening risks and spreads rapidly in congregate care settings,” said Mike McCormick, interim director of the DHS Office of Aging and People with Disabilities. “We will continue to evaluate all long-term care policies in partnership with Oregon Health Authority to ensure they are in line with Governor Kate Brown’s reopening plan for the state.”

Resources:

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Update- Zion Gallaher found - 07/17/20

(Salem, OR)– Zion Gallaher, a child who went missing from Portland, Ore. on Sunday, June 7 has been found. Zion was located on the morning of Thursday, July 16. The Oregon Department of Human Services is thankful for the community support to find him.

Report child abuse to the Oregon Child Abuse Hotline by calling 1-855-503-SAFE (7233).  This toll-free number allows you to report abuse of any child or adult to the Oregon Department of Human Services, 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year. You can also report child abuse by calling a local police department, county sheriff, county juvenile department, or Oregon State Police.