The Temporary Assistance Unit administers a variety of Social Services' programs designed to assist individuals and families in need. Due to the economic conditions, this unit continues to process a high number of emergencies. Emergencies are usually situations where a household is facing eviction, has a utility shut-off or is without heat. This unit also provides aid to individuals and families who become homeless as a result of a natural disaster such as a flood or a tornado. Programs include:
Programs for Families
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is the federal cash assistance program for families with children under 18. This program has a sixty-month time limit. To be eligible the adults in the family must meet the work activity requirements. Usually when a family receives TANF, it also receives Food Stamps and Medicaid, in addition to cash assistance.
Emergency Assistance to Families is one-time emergency payments of rent and/or utilities to assist families encountering crisis. A family may receive more than one EAF payment in a twelve month period if the subsequent emergency is unrelated to the previous.
Programs for Single Individuals and Childless Couples
Safety Net Assistance is New York State's cash assistance program for childless adults and certain families that do not meet the Federal program criteria. These families include those that have a family member who is not complying with the drug/alcohol requirements or those who have exhausted their sixty-months of TANF eligibility. The individuals also usually receive Medicaid and Food Stamps in addition to cash assistance.
There are two components to the Safety Net Program: cash and non-cash. Households that have exhausted their 60 months of TANF Assistance, or have an adult head of household who cannot work because of substance abuse or refuses to participate in drug screening assessment and treatment or have received 24 months of cash Safety Net Assistance have their shelter, fuel and utility allowances issued directly to the vendor.
Emergency Aid to Adults is the state and locally funded emergency assistance program for recipients of Supplemental Security Income.