GRAND RAPIDS — Michigan families receiving food assistance benefits are expected to get payment for February, but the state is encouraging recipients to use the help wisely.
Despite the longest federal government shutdown in U.S. history, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) will issue benefits to the 1.2 million Michiganders who receive food assistance funds, which would be received in February, starting Saturday, Jan. 19.
MDHHS said clients who don’t receive their benefits on that date should receive the funds the following week, according to the agency.
The benefits are not additional benefits and Michigan beneficiaries need to know that no food assistance payments will be made in February.
“MDHHS is pleased that the department is able to work with its federal partners to make sure Michigan families have food on the table in February,” said MDHHS Deputy Director of Field Operations Administration Terrence Beurer.
The state agency strongly encourages families to budget the money received in January so they can meet their food needs through the entire month of February.
Officials with the U.S. Department of Agriculture said food assistance will be issued in February, despite the shutdown. MDHHS said Women, Infants and Children (WIC) benefits should be available for states to issue in February without interruption. In Michigan, more than 200,000 mothers, pregnant women and children from birth to age 5 receive nutritional food assistance through WIC.