Federal relief includes increased food stamp benefits
Many Vermont households that rely on food stamps will get higher benefits in April and May.
3Squares Vermont is part of the federal coronavirus relief bill. It won't permanently change a household's monthly benefit. Households already getting maximum 3Squares benefits won't get an increase.
Eligible households will automatically get their benefits the same way they normally do -- through an EBT card.
The bump in federal assistance comes at a critical time. Food insecurity in Vermont has increased by a one-third during the coronavirus pandemic,
The survey found that food insecurity was up from 18.3% to 24.3% and that 45% of those surveyed had lost their jobs, been furloughed or had hours cut. Two-thirds of insecure Vermonters experienced job losses or work disruptions since the pandemic started.
Researchers say less than 30% of respondents who experienced food insecurity participated in food assistance programs.