Pandemic Aid Program Opening Up For Children In Low-Income Families

Jun 23, 2020

A new federal program, Pandemic-EBT, will soon be offered by Washington state to children who missed out on free and reduced price lunches due to school closures.
Credit Washington Department of Social and Health Services

Washington state social service officials say they will soon offer food benefits to families whose children have missed out on free school lunches this spring.

The program is called Pandemic-EBT, or electronic benefit transfer. It’s a federal program adminstered by states.

Abby Miller is a registered dietitian at Educational Service District 101, which serves northeast Washington.

“This will offer some financial assistance to families for each day that school was closed. In order to qualify, children must be between the ages of five and 18 years old. They need to be enrolled in a public school that offers the national school lunch program. Then, that family needs to qualify for free and reduced-price meals," Miller said.

She says students could receive up to $400.

Parents who want to apply for benefits for their children can apply online beginning Sunday at WAconnections.org. Or, beginning Monday, they can call 1-877-501-2233.