Oregon issuing $39 million in pandemic EBT food assistance to 325,000 children

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Oregon will provide $39 million in food benefits to about 325,000 eligible children through the month of September. The Oregon Department of Human Services says the benefits are part of a temporary COVID-19 response program meant to provide additional food support for children whose access to food provided through school programs. 

Here is the full announcement from ODHS:

(Salem) – The Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS) will begin issuing approximately $39 million in Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) food benefits to approximately 325,000 students in Oregon on Aug. 31. 

“We are grateful to be able to provide these food benefits to eligible students in Oregon,” said Claire Seguin, director of the ODHS Self-Sufficiency Programs. “As communities continue to be affected by COVID-19 and the rising cost of food, we know that many families are experiencing hardship and are struggling to get enough healthy food for themselves and their children. We encourage anyone who is struggling to meet their basic needs to contact our partners at 211, the Oregon Food Bank and their local Community Action Agency for support during this difficult time.”

How students will receive P-EBT food benefits

The P-EBT food benefits will be issued onto the P-EBT cards mailed to students in Spring 2023. Families who lost or threw away their card can contact the P-EBT call center at (844) ORE-PEBT or (844) 673-7328 to request a new card.

Newly eligible students will receive two pieces of mail addressed to them: 

    • A letter notifying them they will receive P-EBT
    • A separate envelope with their P-EBT card that has $120 of food benefits on it

Who is eligible for P-EBT food benefits

Students are eligible for this P-EBT issuance if they received free or reduced-price National School Lunch Program meals at school or attended a Community Eligibility Provision school in May 2023.

More P-EBT food benefits to come for certain children

Oregon has received federal approval to provide additional P-EBT food benefits to children under 6 years old who received Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program food benefits between July 2022 and August 2023. Details about when and how these children will receive their P-EBT food benefits will be announced as soon as it is available. 

What is the P-EBT program?

Since 2020, Oregon has issued approximately $1 billion in P-EBT food benefits to help children in Oregon get enough quality and nutritious food. 

These additional food benefits are part of the P-EBT program, a temporary COVID-19 response program meant to provide additional food support for children whose access to adequate and quality food received through school programs may have been impacted by COVID-19.

Visit pebt.oregon.gov for more information about the P-EBT program. 

Families with specific questions about their child’s eligibility or P-EBT card can contact the P-EBT Call Center at (844) ORE-PEBT or (844) 673-7328. The P-EBT Call Center is available Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Pacific in seven language options (English, Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Somalian, Mandarin and Cantonese). Callers may also request a translator for additional languages.

P-EBT does not replace any child nutrition program already offered and families are encouraged to continue to participate in meal programs in their schools and communities.  

P-EBT food benefits are issued in addition to regular SNAP benefits. P-EBT benefits are not considered in a public charge test.

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