Many see delays in benefit renewals from DFACS - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Many see delays in benefit renewals from DFACS

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Families relying on food stamps and Medicaid say they can't afford to wait any longer for their benefits.

They want answers. The Department of Family and Children Services says there was an issue with renewal notices being sent out late.

Not only have these recipients not received their benefit renewals, but they haven't been able to talk to anyone about it yet.

DFACS says it has switched over to a new service that has been having complications with the calling system. People who can't get through by phone are finding themselves waiting more than three hours just to ask questions.

Carolyn Williams and her four kids rely on food stamps from DFACS for meals. Her benefits where supposed to hit on Nov. 9, but she still hasn't received them, or any explanations

"It's a big deal for me and my kids because we don't have nothing to eat," said Williams. "I'm number 51, and I've been down here sicne 8 AM and I haven't been seen yet. "

Williams isn't the only one trying to find out why this month's benefits have not kicked in yet. Valencia Hollis says this is her second day trying to get answers about food stamps and Medicaid for her baby.

"I have not gotten any new Medicaid. I have not gotten a letter stating that his Medicade number is such and such. He's had doctors visits. He has unpaid medical bills,"said Hollis. "Stuff is just building up. On top of the fact, my food stamps, haven't dropped. And I have two children to take care of."

DFACS says about 10 days ago, it was brought to their attention that some benefit renewal notices had not been sent out on time. Like many, Williams and Hollis had been given a 1-877 number to call, but because of high call volume, they cant get through.

DFACS says they have switched to a new service called Georgia One, and when people couldn't get through over the phone, they showed up at the DFACS office.

"The lobby is packed full of people. Lots of people. I think they gave out more than 100 numbers.  And people are still sitting and waiting to know whats going on with their Medicade case and their food stamp cases," said Williams.

DFACS says it is working diligently to fix the complications with Georgia One, which should reduce the wait times.

They have brought in extra staff and are working extended hours to restore peoples benefits. DFACS says if you apply for the renewal before November 25, you will get the entire months benefits. You can apply here www.compass.ga.gov.

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