Code for America has launched a new initiative to work with state and local governments (SLGs) to rebuild America’s safety net so that “government services are equitable, easy-to-use, and built for the digital age.”

“Code for America has a vision for a modern safety net that is equitable and easy for people to use,” said Amanda Renteria, the organization’s CEO. “But following years of neglect and direct attacks, our systems are badly frayed.”

“So today, we’re launching a new initiative to transform our safety net, make sure that it is people-centered, and is accessible to all – especially by those who have been historically marginalized,” she said. “We look forward to working in partnership with state governments and community organizations to catalyze change across the nation.”

The initiative focuses on helping SLGs and community partners to:

  • “Improve Federal nutrition assistance service delivery by closing the SNAP participation gap and addressing unnecessary barriers to getting and keeping benefits.
  • Increase WIC participation by expanding the use of accessible, modular digital services that meet the needs of the families and the community agencies that directly serve them.
  • Focus on developing single, integrated benefits applications that save time and make it easier to sign up for all the benefits an individual or family is eligible for – requiring users to only tell their story once.”

Code for America said the new initiative will work with state agencies by matching their needs with the “most promising opportunities” to reduce barriers and design human-centered, modern solutions for access to the safety net.

To implement the new initiative, the nonprofit has received funding from Blue Meridian Partners.

“America is leading a groundbreaking effort to work together with government to design and build a modern, digital safety net,” said Nancy Roob, CEO of Blue Meridian Partners. “This important work will reduce barriers to essential benefits that can help millions of individuals and families move up the economic ladder and change the lives of generations to come.”

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Kate Polit
Kate Polit
Kate Polit is MeriTalk SLG's Assistant Copy & Production Editor, covering Cybersecurity, Education, Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs