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Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients can now apply for CalFresh

Media Advisory

May 1, 2019

Contact: Gene Kennedy, Senior Public Information Specialist, DPSS
Phone: (951) 203-0343

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients can now apply for CalFresh
24,000 Riverside County households potentially eligible under new California law

It’s a first for California. Starting June 1, seniors and those with disabilities who receive SSI may also apply for CalFresh benefits.

Since 1974, residents receiving SSI/SSP were not eligible for CalFresh food benefits. That has now changed under a new California law – a change that will help reduce hunger and poverty across Riverside County.

DPSS estimates roughly 24,000 Riverside County households who rely on SSI/SSP could be eligible for CalFresh benefits under what’s called the CalFresh SSI Expansion. If approved, customers could use EBT cards, similar to debit cards, at many area grocery stores and markets.

As soon as May, SSI/SSP customers can apply online at or

Customers can also apply in person at DPSS district offices or by mailing applications to district offices. However, eligibility won’t start until June 1.

Customers should also know that applying for or receiving CalFresh benefits does not change the amount of SSI/SSP benefits.

You can learn more about this historic change at