SNAP Information

Requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Fresh at the Avenue accepts SNAP benefits! To help you navigate SNAP, including some important changes made to the program beginning in 2020, the Coalition has provided the information below.

SNAP has two sets of work requirements.  If you are age 16 – 59 and able to work, you will probably need to meet the general work requirements to get SNAP benefits. The general work requirements include registering for work, participating in SNAP Employment and Training (E&T) or workfare if assigned by your state SNAP agency, taking a suitable job if offered, and not voluntarily quitting a job or reducing your work hours below 30 hours a week without an approved reason. 

You are excused from the general work requirements if you are any one of these things:

  • Already working at least 30 hours a week (or earning wages at least equal to the Federal minimum wage multiplied by 30 hours)
  • Meeting work requirements for another program (TANF or unemployment compensation)
  • Taking care of a child under 6 or an incapacitated person
  • Unable to work due to a physical or mental limitation
  • Participating regularly in an alcohol or drug treatment program
  • Studying in school or a training program at least half-time (but college students are subject to other eligibility rules).

If you are supposed to meet the general work requirements on the basis of the criteria above but haven’t taken steps to fulfill them, you may be disqualified from getting SNAP for at least a month and must start meeting the requirements to get SNAP again.  If you get back on SNAP and your requirements laps again, then you may again be disqualified for longer than a month and could be disqualified indefinitely.

  • Work at least 80 hours a month. Work can be for pay, for goods or services (for something other than money), unpaid, or as a volunteer
  • Participate in a work program at least 80 hours a month. A work program could be SNAP Employment and Training or another federal, state, or local work program
  • Participate in a combination of work and work program hours for a total of at least 80 hours a month
  • Participate in workfare for the number of hours assigned to you each month (the number of hours will depend on the amount of your SNAP benefit)

You are excused from the ABAWD work requirement and time limit if you are any one of these things:

  • Unable to work due to a physical or mental limitation
  • Pregnant
  • Have someone under 18 in your SNAP household
  • Excused from the general work requirements (see above)
  • If you have to meet the ABAWD work requirement but you don’t, you may lose your benefits after 3 months.  To get SNAP again, you must meet the ABAWD work requirement for a 30-day period or become excused. Otherwise, you may need to wait until the end of your 3-year period, when you’ll get another 3 months under the time limit. 

Special Requirements for Able Bodied Adults without Dependents (ABAWD)

If you are age 18 – 49, able to work, and don’t have any dependents, you might need to meet both the general work requirements outlined above and an additional work requirement for ABAWDs to get SNAP for more than 3 months in 3 years (the general time limit). You can meet the ABAWD work requirement by doing any one of these things:

In the days since that first pop-up market, the Coalition has moved into a permanent space in the historic Pennsylvania Avenue Market, now known as the Avenue Market. Every Saturday from 9:30AM to 4:00PM and Wednesdays from 11:00AM to 4:00PM, local residents stop by to purchase fresh produce that is often produced at local Baltimore City farms such as the Whitelock Community Farm and Strength to Love II, each located in the 21217 area code. The program, called Fresh at the Avenue, also serves as an important focal point of workforce development. Residents have an opportunity to gain employment at the food stall where they are paid a fair wage, given public-facing responsibilities, and trained with skills that will make them an attractive member of the workforce for other employers.

If you have any questions about qualifying for SNAP, please reach out to the Coalition staff at [email protected].