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DHR announces additional pandemic EBT benefits coming soon to eligible families

Alabama families who qualify for Pandemic EBT can expect to see additional benefits loaded onto their EBT cards within the next week.


The Alabama Department of Human Resources on Monday announced that Alabama families who qualify for Pandemic EBT can expect to see additional benefits loaded onto their EBT cards within the next week.

Nancy Buckner is the Alabama DHR Commissioner.

“When our children grow up and reflect back on the challenges of the pandemic, our hope is that they won’t be burdened by painful memories of childhood hunger,” Buckner said. “The P-EBT program has definitely helped Alabama provide children with more food throughout this difficult period in history.”

The Alabama Department of Human Resources in June issued P-EBT benefits to approximately 470,000 children who missed out on free or reduced-price school meals because of the pandemic. Those benefits covered meals missed from August through December 2020.

Now, the eligible children will receive compensation for benefits lost from January through May 2021.

The upcoming P-EBT benefits will be added electronically to EBT cards that eligible families already received in June and July. Recipients should keep their cards because additional benefits may be added in the future.

Children in pre-K and K-12 will qualify for P-EBT if they lost access to meals from the National School Lunch Program during the 2020 to 2021 school year because their schools either closed or switched to virtual and hybrid learning models in response to the pandemic.

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Children who returned to in-person learning from January through May are not eligible for these benefits because they were present in school to receive their meals through the National School Lunch Program. Eligibility is based on data from the Alabama State Department of Education.

DHR is tasked with overseeing the distribution of P-EBT with assistance from ALSDE. The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service administers the program at the federal level.

There is no application for P-EBT; ALSDE has provided DHR with the names of children enrolled in the National School Lunch Program, which qualifies a child for P-EBT.

If you have any questions about the P-EBT program a toll-free customer service hotline is available at 1-800-410-5827.  Support specialists are available from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Due to a high volume of calls, callers are encouraged to remain on the line if they experience wait times.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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