Latest Updates

The Department of Social Services is committed to making sure you get the services you need while protecting your health and the health of our team members. We will continue to offer important updates about our offices and services below. Please check back frequently for the most recent information.

Family Support Division

Please visit our contact page to learn how to connect with us if you need help.

Food Assistance

  • FOOD BANKS - The Department of Social Services (DSS) will divide $1.5 million from the Coronavirus Relief Fund among Missouri’s six regional food banks to help meet the needs of the growing number of Missourians who now rely on food assistance. The funds will help food banks serve more than 1,000 food pantries, domestic violence shelters, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and other meal sites. Read more…
  • P-SNAP - DSS will issue Pandemic Food Stamp/Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (P-SNAP) benefits, which will allow all households currently eligible for SNAP to receive a minimum P-SNAP benefit amount of $95. Anyone who is currently eligible for SNAP will automatically receive P-SNAP. For more information, read our Frequently Asked Questions.
  • TEMPORARY BENEFIT INCREASE - The Consolidated Appropriations Act (2021) was signed into law and included a temporary 15% increase in SNAP (Food Stamp) benefits for all SNAP households. This increase in benefits began in January 2021 and will end June 30, 2021. Anyone who is currently eligible for SNAP will automatically get this increase.
  • P-EBT - Pandemic-Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) was available to help families cover food costs for children in their home who would have received free and reduced lunch at school but were not in school due to the pandemic. The application period for this benefit ended on July 7th. For more information, read our Frequently Asked Questions.
  • FOOD STAMP RECERTIFICATIONS - The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) currently requires Missourians to complete and send a periodic recertification form and any required documents to verify that they still qualify for SNAP (Food Stamp) benefits. The Family Support Division will mail a recertification form that will need to be completed and returned with any required documents before the deadline on the letter.
  • FOOD STAMP INTERVIEWS - You will only be required to complete a SNAP (Food Stamp) interview if you are a new applicant. If you already get SNAP benefits and received a recertification form, you do not need to do a phone interview at this time. If you are a new SNAP applicant, we will call the number you listed on your application to do your phone interview within 3 days of receiving your application. So you know it is us calling, we will appear on your caller ID as Family Support Division (855-823-4908).

Cash Assistance (TANF)

  • Work requirements for Temporary Assistance benefits will resume on August 1, 2020. If you get Temporary Assistance benefits, you can get help with employment training services through the Missouri Work Assistance (MWA) Program.

Energy Assistance

  • Eligible Missourians have until May 31, 2021 to apply for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) to get help with payments for their winter heating bills. The Department of Social Services also increased the income level for Missourians to be able to qualify for assistance for the winter 2020-2021 heating and summer 2021 cooling programs. The LIHEAP Energy Crisis Intervention Program (ECIP) helps pay your fuel bill when your energy is shut off, or is threatened to be shut off, even if you have not received a shut off notice. The maximum amounts for ECIP help are $800 for winter and $600 for summer.

Employment & Training Programs

  • Missourians who get Food Stamp (SNAP) benefits or Temporary Assistance can get help preparing for, finding, or keeping a job at no-cost. Food Stamp (SNAP) recipients can get help through the SkillUp Program, and individuals who get Temporary Assistance benefits can get help through the Missouri Work Assistance Program.

More Help

  • The Missouri Services Navigator helps Missourians find essential services, like food pantries, school meal programs for students, diaper banks, and more. There are over 2,000 helpful services listed, with new services added daily.

Child Care

Families

  • The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Child Care Plan will offer eligible families the following child care benefits:
    • Full-time child care subsidy benefits for eligible school-aged students who are not attending school in person through May 31, 2021.
    • Low-income Missouri families who are unemployed due to COVID-19 can now get a temporary Child Care Subsidy benefit (up to 60 days) while they look for work. This benefit is available through May 31, 2021.
    • Effective through December 31, 2021, parents who work, attend school, or train for work with an income from 138 to 215 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL), may now qualify for Transitional Child Care Subsidy, even if they previously did not qualify for Child Care Subsidy.
    • Missouri families qualifying for or currently receiving a Transitional Child Care Subsidy benefit will receive an 80 percent subsidy benefit if their income is between 138 to 175 percent of the FPL or a 60 percent subsidy benefit if their income is from 176 to 215 percent of the FPL.
  • The Child Care Subsidy program will work on a case-by-case basis to approve additional hours of care for families affected by COVID-19.

Providers

  • The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Child Care Plan will offer child care providers the following benefits:
    • Child care providers may apply for a grant of up to $25,000 to support the needs of school age children who are virtually learning while in their care. Please watch this virtual conference for more information or review our bid proposals to learn about all bidding opportunities.
    • To help offset income loss due to low attendance during COVID-19, $12 million will be provided to fund 20 percent rate differential payments from January through May 2021 for Child Care Subsidy Program providers not currently receiving disproportionate share rate differential payments.
    • When a facility is closed due to COVID, or a child is quarantined during COVID, DSS will now allow the provider to request reimbursement for these days at full time authorization based on “normal” attendance. Providers can retroactively request these payments through the Payment Resolution Request (PRR) process for August 1, 2020 through May 31, 2021.
    • Licensed Child Care Subsidy provider agreements are extended through March 31, 2021.
    • Child Care Subsidy providers who choose to close their daycare need to notify the Children’s Division.
    • We have updated our child care subsidy payment policies in response to COVID-19.
    • Child care providers remaining open to provide services to essential personnel were able to apply to receive a one-time payment based on the child care provider’s capacity and range from $1,000 (under 10 children) to $7,500 (over 200 children). The application for the one-time payment ended on June 30th.
    • All licensed or licensed-exempt child care providers who operate non-traditional hours were able to apply to receive a $100 monthly stipend for each child care slot for the months of April, May, and June. The application period for the stipend ended on June 30, 2020.
    • Missouri Child Care Subsidy providers will receive payments based on authorized care instead of actual attendance for April, May, and June service months. Beginning in July 2020, payments will resume being based off actual attendance.
    • Missouri has allocated $10 million for one-time grants to higher education institutions to establish on-campus child care programs that include slots for Child Care Subsidy families.

MO HealthNet (Medicaid)

Participants

  • Telehealth is available to MO HealthNet participants. Read this important notice for more information.
  • There will be no co-pays for COVID-19 testing for MO HealthNet participants.
  • Consistent with the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act, effective immediately, the Department of Social Services will not terminate eligibility for any Medicaid participant unless the individual requests a voluntary termination of eligibility or the individual ceases to be a resident of the state through the end the federal emergency COVID-19 declaration.
  • MO HealthNet is relaxing requirements related to prescription refills and prior authorizations to ensure participants have access to essential medications.

Providers

Children's Division

  • If you have concerns about a child, report it to the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline at 1-800-392-3738. This toll-free telephone line is answered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If a child is in immediate danger, please call 911. If you need to contact the Children’s Division for any other reason, please reach out to your local county office for help.
  • As of May 16, local family support teams will work to determine the best way for parents to visit children in foster care on a case-by-case basis, making every effort to make sure visitations are successful and safe.
  • Effective May 16, all previous temporary guidance and COVID specific temporary policies will be rescinded and staff are to follow policies set forth in the Child Welfare Manual.
  • During the COVID-19 pandemic, many foster families are in need of household and personal products, diapers, and other items. If you would like to help, reach out to your county Children’s Division contact to find out how you can help families in your area.
  • The Children’s Division released a temporary policy providing guidance to Resource Parents planning travel with children in their care during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Division of Youth Services

  • Visitation for families/legal guardians is currently operating on a modified basis
  • All visitors will have to take a rapid COVID test before they can enter (NOTE: This does not apply to vendors like food delivery drivers)
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times at DYS residential facilities
  • COVID-19 Positives at DYS Residential Centers