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Food and Nutrition

New York Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)


The New York Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) (formerly called the Food Stamp Program) helps you and your family buy food needed for good health. You can buy food from most grocery stores and other retailers that sell food. If you meet the program guidelines, you will get a special debit card (called an EBT Card). This debit card comes with a certain amount of money already on it to pay for food. The amount of money you get on the card may depend on three things:
  • household income from all sources (earned and unearned) such as money you get from a job, Social Security, SSI, or interest
  • how many people live in your household
  • where you live
You can use the card at most grocery stores, certain senior centers, and some meal delivery services such as Meals on Wheels. It works just like a regular debit card. You buy your groceries using the card and the cost is taken out of the total amount on the card. More money is put on your debit card on a monthly basis.


How do I apply?


To apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), you can print and fill out the application form and mail it to your local office. You can also apply by using the online application. Call your State Hotline at (800) 342-3009 (in-state only) or (718) 557-1399 (NYC only) to see if you can apply by phone.

If you are receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, the state has created the New York State Nutrition Improvement Project (NYSNIP) to make it easier for you to apply for SNAP. Please contact your local office for more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I eligible?

You can get help from this program if you have limited income.

In some cases, you may be able to take part in this program without having to do anything. You will automatically get the program or have more generous rules if you and/or members of your household already get cash benefits from other programs such as:

  • Public or General Assistance
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Additionally, if you get non-cash benefits (including TANF-funded informational pamphlet or counseling services), you may have higher income and/or resource limits.

Please note: In certain situations, there may be other program rules that you may need to meet such as taking part in Employment & Training programs and other work requirements.

What are the citizenship guidelines?

If you are a U.S. citizen and meet the other program guidelines, you may get help from this program. If you live in the United States but are not a U.S. citizen, you may still apply if you and/or members of your household meet at least one of following guidelines for legal immigrants:

  • lived legally in the United States for at least 5 years or more
  • get disability related assistance or benefits, no matter when you entered the United States
  • children under the age of 18, no matter when the child entered the United States
Note: If you meet all of the program guidelines except for the citizenship requirement, you may still get help from this program. However, you may have to satisfy additional program rules before you can get the benefit.

What will I need?
Did You Know?
3 out of 5 older adults who qualify for SNAP are missing out on the benefit

Definition(s)

Multi-Program Forms:
This is to apply for more than one program at the same time.

Food Only Forms:
This is to apply for the SNAP/Food Stamp program only.