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DHS Statement on Settlement of Class-Action SNAP Lawsuit

Providence, R.I. (February 24, 2017) Acting Department of Human Services Director Eric Beane today released the following statement on the Settlement Agreement reached with the American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island and the National Center for Law and Economic Justice (NCLEJ) related to timely issuance of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits:

"Ensuring Rhode Islanders receive the help they need, when they need it, is our highest priority. We are pleased to have worked collaboratively with the ACLU and NCLEJ to reach this agreement, which will help ensure eligible Rhode Islanders can access SNAP benefits more quickly. Annually, more than 170,000 people rely on this federally funded program for vital food assistance, and the challenges they have faced since the rollout of UHIP are unacceptable. We are committed to working in partnership with the ACLU and NCLEJ to achieve the terms of this agreement."

As part of the agreement, DHS will mail a notice to those who have applied for SNAP benefits since August 2016, encouraging them to contact DHS if they believe they did not receive their benefits on time. A copy of this notice and of the Settlement Agreement submitted for the Court's approval is available on the State's transparency portal at

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