Eligibility Programs

The Department of Social Services offers a wide range of programs and services to families and individuals to assist them in meeting their basic needs for food, clothing, shelter and medical care.  Services are also provided to individuals to assist them in preparing for, obtaining and maintaining employment. These include:

Eligibility Screening - My Benefits

  • To check initial eligibility for SNAP, Medicaid, HEAP, and Childcare Subsidies, as well as several other programs and tax credits, please log on to New York State's MyBenefit's website.
  • In addition to information about various programs, this site contains application information and an eligibility screening feature.
  • Final eligibility is determined by the Department of Social Services at the time of application.

Child Care Subsidy

Contact the Child Care Subsidy Unit at (845) 364-3797 or Email: .

The Child Care Subsidy Unit is committed to

  • Establishing and renewing eligible families receiving Temporary Assistance so they can participate in employment and employment activities
  • Working parents who have succeeded in leaving welfare
  • Working families with incomes below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level
  • Teenage parents in order to help them finish high school
  • Families who need help to prevent a child's out-of-home placement

Back to Top


Contact the Employment Unit at (845) 364-3143 or Email: .

Temporary Assistance applicants and recipients must participate in work activities assigned by the Employment Unit.  These work-related activities are intended to lead applicants and recipients to employment opportunities that will return them to self-sufficiency.

A partial list of work activities includes, but is not limited to:

  • Employment - both subsidized and unsubsidized
  • Job search and job readiness training
  • Work experience
  • On-the-job training
  • Community service
  • Vocational education

Please view the Employment Services Fact Sheet for more information.
SNAP Recipients are also subject to work requirements.  To get more info see the SNAP Employment Services Work Requirements Fact Sheet.


Back to Top

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Contact the SNAP Unit at (845) 364-3032 or Email: 

Serves as the first line of defense against hunger.  Applicants can apply online or contact the DSS Eligibility Call Center at 845-364-3032 if a personal interview is desired.

Applicants can also visit one of the following agencies that have community computers and staff who will assist with SNAP applications:

  • HACSO, 24 West Street, Spring Valley, 845-352-5897
  • Nyack Center, 58 Depew Avenue, Nyack, 845-358-2600
  • People to People, 121 W. Nyack Road, Nanuet, 845-623-4900
  • Village of Kaser, 15 Elyon Road, Monsey, 845-352-2932
  • WestCOP at Rockland Community Action Program, 17 W. Broad Street, Haverstraw, 845-553-9118

For general information on SNAP, visit the US Department of Agriculture website.

Click here to view information on the SNAP Fact Sheet

SNAP benefits are issued through an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card. Please see instructions on how to use your card to get SNAP.

If you find you need additional food throughout the month to feed your family, there are many local Food Pantries and Soup Kitchens; click here for a complete listing: Rockland Community Against Hunger. It is recommended that you contact the pantries/kitchens to confirm days and hours of operation. 

Eat Smart NY provides workshops on numerous food-related topics, including: nutrition/food safety education, assistance with family financial management, help with dietary planning and food shopping for low income individuals and families. Contact Cornell Cooperative Extension of Rockland County at 845-429-7085 or log on to their website, www.rocklandcce.org, for additional details. 

See our listing of Farmer's Markets for locations in Rockland. Most markets accept FMNP (coupons for income-eligible seniors and WIC recipients) and some accept SNAP.

Visit U.S. Department of Agriculture to find out how to file a SNAP discrimination complaint.

Click below to view the Nondiscrimination Statements in English and Spanish.



Summer Food Service Program:

The NYS Education Department offers low-income children 18 years of age and younger, as well as disabled young adults over age 18 enrolled in school programs for persons with disabilities, to receive free, nutritious meals during the summer months when schools are not in session. Call 1-800-522-5006 or visit www.fns.usda.gov/summerfoodrocks for a location near you.

Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP)

Contact the HEAP Unit at (845) 364-3480 or Email: .

HEAP is a Federally-funded energy program that assists low-income individuals and families in meeting their immediate home energy needs. HEAP season runs from November 2019-September 2020. If you qualify, HEAP may be able to help you if your source of heat is: Natural Gas, Propane, Oil, Electricity, Wood/Wood Pellets, Kerosene, Coal or Corn.

HEAP is comprised of the following components:

1. REGULAR HEAP (November 12, 2019 - March 16, 2020)

You may be eligible for a regular HEAP benefit if your household's gross monthly income is at or below the current income guidelines for your household size and meet all other non-financial requirements. The benefit amounts will vary depending on your household income, fuel type, and if a vulnerable member (Disabled, Child under the age of 6, or an individual age 60 years or older) is in your household. You may be eligible for a regular benefit even if you have money in the bank, stocks, bonds or other resources.

How to apply:

  • Apply online via www.Mybenefits.ny.gov
  • In person at Rockland County Department of Social services HEAP Unit, 50 Sanatorium Rd. Bldg. L, Pomona NY 10970
  • By Mail to the address above.
  • By Phone.  Call HEAP Unit at 845-364-3480 or 845-364-3485
  • Call the HEAP Unit at 845-364-3480 or 845-364-3335 if you need to schedule an interview

NOTE: If you received a HEAP benefit in the 2017-2018 season, no interview is required.

2. EMERGENCY HEAP  (January 2, 2020 - March 16, 2020)

You may be eligible for a HEAP Emergency Benefit if your gross household monthly income is at or below the current income guidelines, you do not have available liquid resources greater than $2,000 or $3,000 if the household contains an individual age 60 or older, and meet all other non-financial requirements.  

You must also be in an emergency situation as defined below:

  • Your natural gas or electric service for heat or heat-related electric service is terminated or scheduled for termination;
  • You have less than ¼ tank of oil, kerosene or propane;
  • You have less than a ten-day supply of any other deliverable fuel source.

If you received a Regular HEAP benefit for the 2018-2019 season and meet the customer of record requirements, you are permitted to apply for Emergency benefits by phone.

  • You can fax your termination notice to 845-364-3130 or email  
  • Include a case number and a telephone number. You will be contacted for a phone interview. 

You may not apply online for emergency benefits.

3. HEATING EQUIPMENT REPAIR & REPLACEMENT [HERR]  (November 4, 2019 - September 30, 2020 or until available funds are exhausted)

HERR is a benefit available to assist homeowners in repairing or replacing primary heating equipment when the equipment is inoperable or unsafe and is in need of repair/replacement. The applicant for the HERR component must be the homeowner. Your household's gross monthly income is at or below the current income guidelines for your household size, not have available resources over $3,000 and meet all other non-financial requirements.

You may not apply online.  

You must submit the application in person at: Rockland County Dept of Social Services, HEAP Unit, 50 Sanatorium Rd. Bldg. L, Pomona NY 10970.

4. HEAP COOLING ASSISTANCE (May 1, 2020 - August 31, 2020 or until available funds are exhausted)

Cooling Assistance is a benefit available to assist with the purchase and installation of air conditioners and fans for HEAP eligible households. Household must have at least one individual with a documented medical condition that is exacerbated by extreme heat. In addition, the household's gross monthly income must be at or below the current income guidelines for the household size and meet all other non-financial requirements.

You may not apply online.

Application must be submitted in person at: Rockland County Dept of Social Services, HEAP Unit, 50 Sanatorium Rd. Bldg. L, Pomona NY 10970.

However, if you received a Regular HEAP benefit greater than $21 during the 2017-2018 season, you are not required to have an interview. 

5. HEAP CLEAN & TUNE (November 4, 2019 – September 30, 2020 or until available funds are exhausted)

Clean & Tune assistance is a benefit available to HEAP eligible homeowners to have their primary heating system cleaned and tuned by a Department of Social Services Heating Equipment Replace & Repair Vendor. The Heating System must be at least 12 months old and not have been cleaned within the last 12 months. If you received Regular HEAP during the past HEAP season, attest that your household income has not increased by more than $200/month and no change in your household composition, you can apply by completing a one-page application. You may not apply online.


Contact the Housing Unit at (845) 364-3150 or Email: .

Housing staff offers comprehensive services to those families and individuals potentially facing homelessness.  The goal is to address and ultimately eliminate the crisis or urgent circumstances surrounding the homeless individual or family. When an emergency housing placement is diverted, these cases are retained until issues such as domestic violence, substance abuse, lack of employment, mental health, and childcare are addressed. Casework counseling and referral to needed services are provided on an ongoing basis.

Housing is notified of all eviction notices, utility disconnects and residential Health Department violations. Staff meets with individuals and family members in an attempt to help them retain safe and affordable housing. In many instances, home visits are conducted to insure that frail, elderly and minor children's health and safety needs are met. Emphasis is placed on maintaining family stability and in protecting the health and safety of all individuals at risk.

Housing staff also communicates with attorneys and landlords to prevent impending evictions. Staff negotiates payments of rent arrears, seeks out rent subsidies, explores housing alternatives, and secures permanent housing for the homeless.   


Back to Top

Medical Assistance

Contact the Medicaid Unit at (845) 364-3040.

The local Rockland County Department of Social Services' Medicaid Unit processes Medicaid applications for residents who are:

  • Medicare recipients.
  • 65 years old or older who are not caretakers for children under 21 years of age.
  • Looking for assistance with the cost of Home Care, Assisted Living Facility or Nursing Home Care.
  • Disabled adults and children eligible for the Excess Income Program.
  • Disabled adults and children applying for specialized waiver programs.
  • Eligible for help paying for Medicare premiums and/or co-pays through the Medicare Savings Program.

All other persons looking for medical insurance must apply for health insurance (including public health insurance programs like Medicaid and Child Health Plus) through the New York State of Health.

How do I apply for Medicaid?

Those meeting the criteria listed above for local processing may drop off a completed application, supplement A and supporting documents at the Rockland County Department of Social Services, Building L, 50 Sanatorium Road, Pomona, New York 10970 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. or apply in person at Building L any Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday morning between 8:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.  Individuals may also mail in their application, supplemental A and supporting documents to the Department of Social Services at the above address, attention Medicaid Unit. 

Applicants who are applying through the New York State of Health have 3 options:

  • Apply online at newyorkstateofhealth.ny.gov.
  • Call the New York State of Health at 1-855-355-5777, Monday – Friday between 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 8:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  Customer Service Representatives can take over-the-phone applications.
  • Check the newyorkstateofhealth.ny.gov website for contact information for in-person assistance provided by Navigators and Certified Application Counselors located throughout the community.

What do I do if I have to apply for expedited Personal Care Services/Consumer Directed Personal Assistance Services? 

Please see our Informational Notice and Attestation Form  for more details.


Back to Top

Temporary Assistance

Contact the Temporary Assistance Unit at (845) 364-3032 or Email: .

Temporary Assistance provides temporary help to needy men, women and children that are unable to work or are working in a job that pays less than the poverty level.  Depending on individual case circumstances, cash benefits are issued under the Federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or the New York State Safety Net Assistance guidelines.  Cash benefits are issued through an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card.  Please click here for instructions on how to access cash from your Card.  The Temporary Assistance Unit also determines eligibility for Medicaid and Food Stamps for Temporary Assistance applicants and recipients.

To apply for Temporary Assistance, stop by the Front Desk of Building L any Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday morning from 8 a.m. until 10:30 a.m.  A completed Temporary Assistance Application and list of supporting documents are required for your interview.  A pre-screening service is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.  An electronic email address, RocklandDTA@dfa.state.ny.us, can be used to send follow up documentation that you have been asked to provide by your caseworker when applying for benefits or to ask questions you might have regarding the process.  This e-mail cannot be used to apply for Temporary Assistance. 

Temporary Assistance applicants/recipients who have an immediate need for Personal Care Services/Consumer Directed Personal Care Services should see information in the Medicaid section above.

Click here to view a Fact Sheet on Temporary Assistance Temporary_Assistance_Fact_Sheet.pdf

See also: Employment