Counties make significant investments in human services to help residents live well and achieve their fullest potential by supporting their path towards economic mobility and self-sufficiency. Many counties are responsible for funding and operating county-based human services agencies and departments providing a variety of services supporting children and families and individuals with employment services and financial assistance. These services offer low-income families and individuals with as cash, emergency and food assistance (e.g., the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC)).
To improve access, counties are creating neighborhood-based services centers embedded in low-income communities where county employees or community-based providers offer workforce preparedness trainings, job search support and financial assistance. Most service centers are closed during COVID-19; however, county workers are supporting residents with online applications, establishing drop off services at local service centers, promoting public health guidelines and developing social distancing protocols for walk-in assistance to reduce the spread of the virus.
The health and safety of residents are paramount for counties. County human services staff are on the frontlines providing essential medical, nutrition and financial assistance and economic supports to children, families and older adults at a critical time in our country and helping to reduce the spread of COVID-19.