Department of Human Services
111 Westfall Rd.
Rochester, NY 14620
Phone: 585 753-6298
Fax: 585 753-6296
The Financial Assistance Division is responsible for the delivery of Temporary Assistance, Medicaid, Food Stamps and daycare subsidies, and for ensuring that only persons eligible for public assistance services are provided such aid. This division also includes employment, domestic violence and managed health care services.
Financial Assistance services are provided in the form of cash, rent, utilities, transportation, food/nutrition, housing, health insurance, daycare subsidies, job search support, and job skills training to those who meet eligibility requirements.
The government assistance programs of Temporary Assistance, Medicaid and Food Stamps are complex and goverened individually by their own set of laws, rules and regulations. The answer to most program-related questions often begin with the words, 'it depends.'
In collaboration with community case managers from several local human services agencies, we have developed and published DHS 101. This booklet of information serves as a basic guide to navigating the complex systems of social services. We try to publish updates at least once per year, but the laws often change frequently. If you see information that is out-dated, please let us know.
The Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) is a federally funded program that assists low income households in meeting the high costs of home heating.
If you are interested in applying for HEAP and are not currently receiving Temporary Assistance or SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Benefits), go to mybenefits.ny.gov to apply online or you may call our HEAP information line at (585)753-6477 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
If you are currently receiving Temporary Assistance, please contact your worker directly at (585)753-2750. In most cases, you are automatically eligible and a HEAP benefit has likely already been calculated and authorized for payment in January.
If you are under age 65 years old and are receiving SNAP only benefits (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Benefits) and not Temporary Assistance, you may call the HEAP Alternate Certifier office at (585)238-8620 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
If you are a Monroe County resident age 60 years or older, and are not currently in receipt of Temporary Assistance or SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Benefits), please call the Senior Citizen's HEAP office at Lifespan at (585) 244-8400 ext. 102 for assistance. Lifespan can answer any questions you may have, assist you with the application process, and address any emergency heating situations. Best of all, this may be accomplished over the telephone.
If you are a Monroe County resident who is under 60, and facing an emergency situation such as a shut-off, denial of service, or are out of heating fuel, please come to our walk-in office at 111 Westfall Road during Normal Business Hours.
For those who have general questions, please call our information and appointment line at (585) 753-6477 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Special Assistance for Home Owners: If you are a home owner and your furnace is in need of repair, we may be able to assist you with the cost of the repair. For more information, please call (585) 753-6477 between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.
More than a decade ago, the energy industry was restructured in New York State to provide consumers with the opportunity to purchase electricity and natural gas from an energy service company (ESCO). The New York State Public Service Commission has recently initiated a proceeding, Case 12-M-0476, to consider potential new rules and regulations to improve the operation of retail energy markets for the benefit of consumers. The Department of Public Service is interested in obtaining information from consumers regarding their experience with ESCOs, as part of a review of those markets. They have developed a short survey which asks pointed questions about customer understanding and experience whith the competitive retail electricity and natural gas marketplace.
To provide feedback by taking the survey, please click on the link below:
SNAP is a state-administered federal nutrition assistance program. Federal Law governs the criteria for eligibility and levels of benefits. Each state is responsible for determining and documenting eligibility, issuing benefits, and maintaining records.
To apply for SNAP please come see us at 691 St. Paul Street and apply in person or go to mybenefits.ny.gov to apply online. You will be screened that day for expedited benefits and, if eligible, they will be issued within five business days. Although it is faster to apply in person, you may also download an application here and mail it to us. You will then be contacted by phone to schedule a telephone interview.
The SFSP was created to reduce the likelihood of nutritional risk for low income children during the months when schools are closed for summer recess by providing free meals at participating summer meal sites such as schools, parks, pools, recreation centers, camps, housing authorities and other neighborhood locations. Through SFSP, schools, governments and nonprofit organizations receive Federal and State funds to continue a child's physical and social development by providing meals during the summer with the number of meals and dates varying by site. Because summer meal sites are selected based on community demographics and pervasiveness of need, any child 18 years of age or younger who comes to an approved open site may receive meals without the need for an eligibility determination to be conducted. At camps, children eligible for free and reduced-price meals may receive SFSP meals. Young adults over age 18 who are enrolled in school programs for persons with disabilities may also participate. For more information on SFSP, please click on the link below or call the New York State Growing Up Healthy Hotline at 1-800-522-5006.
Most common forms, applications and informational booklets can be found online at theNew York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance website. They are offered in several languages. Applicants can read information right online or print the information/application they desire and print it out.
Q. How do I apply for Medicaid?
To apply for Medicaid, applicants under age 65 and not disabled please click on the link below for information regarding the new Health Plan Marketplace and Medicaid Application process.
You can also visit the New York State of Health website, or call (855) 355-5777 for assistance applying over the phone.
For applicants over 65 years old or disabled, please contact 753-6960 for an application and Supplement A. Applications and Supplement A can also be obtained from the New York State Department of Health.
Chronic Care Medicaid is a health care coverage for those who reside in a nursing home type setting. The intent of the program is to assist those aging and disabled residents who cannot afford to pay for their own medical care. Eligibility for the program is determined through a means test that reviews the income and resources of the individual and/or spouse applying for coverage. A five year review of all financial transactions is required.
Chronic Care Medicaid applications are availablein the Monroe County Department of Human Services waiting rooms located at 111 Westfall Road or 691 St. Paul Street. To request an application by phone, please call (585) 753-6960.
Q. Where do I call for information about Medicaid managed care programs?
For information about Medicaid managed care programs, please call New York Medicaid CHOICE at (585) 753-6702 or 1 (800) 505-5678.
Q. How do I order Medicaid transportation to a medical appointment?
If you are enrolled in managed care, contact your managed care provider for assistance.
If you are a Monroe County Medicaid recipient, you may call 585 288-4680 (Medical Answering Service) to request transportation to medical appointments.
Q. How do I report Medicaid Provider or Consumer Fraud?
To report provider or consumer fraud, you may call 1-877-87FRAUD (1-877-873-7283).
Q. Where do I get information the Prenatal Care Assistance Program?
For more information about the Prenatal Care Assistance Program visit the NYS Department of Health website
Q. Where do I call for information about Medicaid Managed Long Term Care programs?
For information about Managed Long Term Care programs, please call New York Medicaid Choice at 1-888-401-6582.
Q. Where do I get information about the New York State Partnership for Long Term Care?
For information about the New York State Partnership for Long Term Care visit their website.
Learn more at NYS Partnership for Long Term Care.
Q. Where do I call for an application for Child Health Plus?
For more information about Child Health Plus please visit the NYS Department of Health website
You may also request information on how to apply for Child Health Plus by calling 1 (800) 698-4543
Q. Where do I call for information about home care services?
For information about Medicaid home care services programs, please call 585 753-5116.
For information on the Consumer Direct Personal Assistance Program, or the Personal Care Aid Program, please call 585 214-1470.
Learn more about Medicaid at the New York State Department of Health.
A variety of home care services are available to Medicaid recipients, allowing them to remain at home, thus preventing more costly nursing home placements. Home care services include home health aide or personal care service, personal emergency response system, and housekeeping. The Home Care Services Unit is responsible for the broad oversight of home care services for the following programs:
For more information on home care services, contact the Home Care Services Unit at 585 753-5116.
For information on the Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Program, or the Personal Care Aid Program, please call 585 214-1470.
Q. How Do I Apply for Temporary Assistance?
Please come to 691 St. Paul Street with your completed application to be screened for shelter, utility or food emergencies.
Applications are available on the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistancewebsite, both DHS offices and at many area community service agencies. Clients may also call the appointment line at 585 753-6960 to have an application mailed to them.
The Financial Assistance Division receives over 50,000 applications yearly. Applicants are required to look for work throughout the application process as well as pursue any other potential benefits such as Social Security, child support and unemployment benefits.
Important: To apply for Medicaid/Food Stamps or child care benefits only call:
Medicaid/Food Stamps: 585 753-6960
Child Care: 585 753-6960
Q. What is Meant by “Work First”?
“Work First” is the phrase used to convey the primary goals for applicants and recipients ... To consider work their first priority. “Work First” is based on the idea that finding a job and earning a paycheck is the best way for families to become self-sufficient.
The responsibility of this office and our partners in the community is to support work and help families overcome barriers. For job search assistance visit RochesterWorks! (585 258-3500) at 255 N. Goodman Street.
Q. When I Work, Can I Still Get Temporary Assistance?
Yes! Partial benefits are available to families depending upon how much is earned. There are over 2,000 Temporary Assistance families who work and receive partial cash benefits and food stamps. DSS will also pay for child care.
Q. What Benefits Are Available When Temporary Assistance Ends?
If you have children, you may still be eligible for Medicaid and Child Care. All child support collected will now go directly to you. Many families who leave Temporary Assistance will still be eligible for Food Stamps.
Q. What is the Earned Income Tax Credit?
The Earned Income Credit is a special tax benefit for people who work full or part-time. Even if you don’t owe income tax, you can get the credit. But, you must file a federal tax return. New York State also has an Earned Income Tax Credit.
Important TA Documents:
If you are concerned about being able to afford the cost of burying or cremating a loved one who has passed, you may be eligible for assistance under the Temporary Assistance program.
The funeral home you are working with can help facilitate scheduling an appointment to meet with our burial coordinator, or you may contact her directly at:
Monroe County Office of Faith-Based Initiatives
Attn: Burial Coordinator
244 S. Plymouth Ave.
Rochester, NY 14608
Because funeral assistance is a component of the Temporary Assistance program, an in-person interview will be required. Please come prepared to discuss the decedent’s (and any legally-responsible relative’s) financial situation, including income and assets. Common income and assets include, but are not limited to, any earned or unearned income due to the decedent’s estate, life insurance proceeds, social security or veteran’s death benefits, and bank accounts.
For applicants who are determined to be eligible for Temporary Assistance, Monroe County will provide a funeral assistance grant up to a maximum of $1,250 for decedents aged six years or older, or up to $500 for deceased children aged five years or younger.
Please note that to be considered an indigent burial, the total funeral cost cannot amount to more than $6,000. If the funeral you are arranging will cost more than $6,000, we will be unable to consider this an indigent burial and we will be unable to provide any assistance.
If you are hard of hearing and you need assistance you may e-mail MCDSS@monroecounty.gov
New York State Relay: Dial 711
TTY Phone Numbers: (800) 421-1220 OR (800) 662-1220
Most common forms, applications and informational booklets can be found online at the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance's website. These applications are offered in several languages and you can read them online or print them out.
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