Area Services & Support

  1. For Residents
  2. For Businesses

SNAP Online Purchasing Plan

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) approved IDHS’ SNAP Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Online implementation plan, which gives SNAP customers the ability to enter their Personal Identification Number (PIN) to order groceries online. All SNAP recipients with Link cards in Illinois will be able to participate.

Read information about the SNAP online purchasing plan.  

Independent Contractors, Sole Proprietors Filing For Unemployment Benefits

May 1, 2020 -  State officials are urging independent contractors and sole proprietors to file for unemployment benefits now (not May 11 as previously advised). Also, note that this initial claim may be denied, but it sets the stage and allows for retroactive compensation once the new application for the self-employed is rolled out (around May 11).

Visit the the Illinois Department of Employment Security website. 

IDES also has a new chat bot on their website to help answer your questions.

Social Security Phone Scams

April 29, 2020 - Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs says Social Security phone scams have skyrocketed, becoming the Number 1 fraud reported to the Federal Trade Commission and Social Security Administration. To help reduce this fraud, Social Security has launched a new online form to report these phone scams.

Report Social Security phone scams. 

Searchable Online Map to Find Food Pantries and School Meal Distribution Sites

April 24, 2020 -  A searchable online map is available for finding local food pantries and school meal distribution sites across the Tri-Counties. It can be searched by city or address. Be sure to adjust the distance range for the broadest search. While much of the information has been recently updated, given demand, it’s a good idea to call ahead.

Search for local food pantries and school meal distribution sites.

Driver’s License and REAL ID Deadlines

April 24, 2020 - Here are some reminders for those needing state driver services such as license renewals and license plate stickers:

  • Expiration dates for driver’s licenses, identification cards, vehicle registrations and other transactions and document filings will be extended at least 90 days after Driver Services Facilities reopen.
  • Renew your license plate sticker online.
  • The REAL ID deadline has been pushed back to October 1, 2021.

Additional SNAP Benefits Funds

April 21, 2020 - Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that $112 million has been added to SNAP benefits to benefit Illinois families. Additional funds will be automatically added to SNAP accounts. Further, he said families with children who depend on free or reduced lunch, but who do not use SNAP, will soon be able to apply for help with a simplified application which will be available soon.

Fill out the simplified SNAP benefits application.

Senior Shopping Hours

April 17, 2020 - The Illinois Retail Merchants Association has complied a growing list of retailers offering special retail hours for vunerable shoppers. Those shoppers include senior citizens, at-risk customers and expectant moms.

Read the list of businesses offering senior shopping hours.

Baby Supplies

April 21, 2020 - Crittenton Centers, 442 W John H. Gwynn Junior Avenue, Peoria, is offering essential baby supply donations, such as diapers, wipes, and baby formula for curbside pickup Mondays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This service is available to anyone with an eligible child and is not ZIP code specific. If you are in need of these supplies, please bring your Photo ID and a copy of your child(ren)’s birth certificate or medical card. Pull to the side door and ring the buzzer.

Call Center for COVID-19 Evaluation

March 27, 2020 -  UnityPoint Health Central Illinois has launched a local Respiratory Triage Call Center. If you believe you need to be tested for COVID-19, you can contact the Respiratory Referral Line at 309-680-2850 for evaluation.The Call Center will be open from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Read the full press release about the triage call center.

Illinois Helps Volunteer Health Professionals Emergency System

March 27, 2020 - Illinoisans with a medical background – from doctors and nurses to dentists and podiatrists – are being encouraged by Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzer to register with the state’s new Illinois Helps line, an emergency system for the advance registration of volunteer health professionals. This will be used for alerts and, potentially, for deployment during a public health emergency. 

Register for the Illinois Helps volunteer health professionals emergency system.