WIC COVID-19 flexibilities extended

Published 9:30 am Monday, September 21, 2020

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Monday the extension of more than a dozen flexibilities ensuring participants in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) continue receiving the food and health support they need for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“USDA has been extremely steadfast in offering flexibilities to ensure Americans in need continue to receive food assistance during COVID-19. President Trump has demonstrated his commitment to supporting Americans in need during the pandemic and setting them up for success as our nation reopens and recovers,” said Sec. Sonny Perdue.“WIC provides vital services to new and expectant mothers, infants, and children and we are committed to making it as easy as possible for them to receive the support they need during the pandemic.”

Without the extension, the flexibilities would have expired Sept. 30.

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WIC provides supplemental foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding promotion and support, and health care referrals to low-income pregnant, postpartum, and breastfeeding women, infants and children under five who are determined by health professionals to be at nutritional risk.

The WIC waivers being extended allow for:

  • Participants to be approved for WIC without being physically present in a local office.
  • Remote issuance of benefits to any participant.
  • Flexibility in food package requirements, including dairy, grains, vegetables and infant foods.
  • Additional options for pick-up of food packages.

More information on the WIC waivers extended, along with those that have been approved since the start of COVID-19, is available at www.fns.usda.gov/coronavirus.