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Temporary Assistance is a financial assistance program that offers temporary help to individuals and families on a short-termed basis until the household is able to achieve self-sufficiency.

TA Programs

Family Assistance (FA) is for families with minor children. It provides cash assistance to eligible families in need that have minor children living with a parent or caretaker. Non-parent caregivers, who are caring for children living in their home without their parent, may be eligible for financial assistance or other supports. Additional information is provided here: Family Assistance operates under TANF guidelines with time limits of five years. Safety Net Assistance (SN) is for individuals, childless couples, and families who have met their 60-month time limit. Cash benefits are limited to two-year time limits. After two years, non-cash assistance vouchers are issued.

Emergency Temporary Assistance Program

Emergency programs provide assistance to families with crisis situations that are threatening to the family such as: evictions, utility shut offs, and diversion payments to prevent the household from applying for ongoing assistance. Some examples of an emergency are:
  • You are homeless.
  • Your landlord has given you a written eviction.
  • You or someone in your family has been beaten, abused or threatened with violence by a husband, wife, partner, or other member of the household.

How to Apply

Where to Apply

  • You may apply in person at the Lewis County DSS office from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday
  • You may also apply at

Lewis County also operates a Warming Center.

AS OF APRIL 8th THE WARMING CENTER IS CURRENTLY CLOSED. Check back in the fall for updates.  

How do I file a discrimination complaint?

New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) and Local Social Service Districts are prohibited from discriminating against applicants and recipients of public benefits on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age, sex, religion, political beliefs, gender identity, transgender status, gender dysphoria, sexual orientation, marital status, military status and reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity. If you think you have been discriminated against while applying for or receiving Temporary Assistance, or that your case has been handled improperly due to some type of discrimination, you can file a complaint of discrimination, by writing to NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, Equal Opportunity and Diversity, 40 N Pearl Street, Albany, NY 12243-0001 or calling (518) 473-8555.