Visits To DSS Offices No Longer Necessary | Community Spirit
Low-income South Carolina residents can now receive public assistance more timely, conveniently and accurately thanks to a statewide processing system being rolled out by the Department of Social Services (DSS).
Under the new system, people seeking Family Independence (FI) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits no longer have to apply in-person at DSS offices.
Instead, they can initially apply for or recertify their benefits using the SCMAPP online application at the DSS Web site: dss.sc.gov.
And beginning in July, clients can contact a statewide call center toll-free and complete the application or recertification process over the phone. Interviewing clients over the phone typically takes just 15 minutes of staff time, compared to one hour for in-person interviews.
DSS also expanded outreach through this “business re-engineering” initiative by partnering with additional community organizations and government agencies that provide services to needy citizens.
Based on nationwide best practices, this modernized and streamlined system enables DSS to simplify internal procedures and better distribute workloads among staff – without hiring more employees at taxpayer expense.
“Instead of each local office handling applications and recertification from start to finish, our new statewide system greatly improves the workflow,” explained Linda Martin, deputy director of DSS economic services.
“DSS teams now focus on specific aspects of the process, resulting in more timely benefits and better customer service.”