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Emergency benefits arriving on time, court ruling says

We hope Maryland can keep the streak going!

June 14, 2012: When Miracyle Thompson applied for food stamps, she was pregnant and skipping meals so that her two sons could eat. But the emergency benefits that should have come within 30 days didn’t come and didn’t come for months.  A court ruling last week marked significant progress in eliminating these delays for thousands of Marylanders.
 
In 2009, the Public Justice Center, Homeless Persons Representation Project, Kirkland & Ellis, and the National Center for Law and Economic Justice, filed a lawsuit on behalf of Miracyle Thompson and Earline Augustus-El to address the delays in processing applications for emergency benefits. Circuit Court Judge Barry Williams issued an injunction ordering the state of Maryland to address the backlog within a year and process applications within the 30 day timeframe. When the state met its target through extensive overtime and other temporary fixes, it moved immediately to dissolve the injunction, claiming a court order was no longer necessary.
 
On June 14, 2012, Judge Williams dissolved the injunction, as the state Department of Human Resources had processed at least 96% of applications on time for the last 19 months. While we’re concerned about the state’s ability to maintain this achievement without permanent measures in place, we applaud DHR staff and leadership for what they have accomplished. As a result, thousands of Marylanders are now receiving emergency benefits when they need them. Read more in this article from the Baltimore Sun.
 


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