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Pandemic Emergency Assistance Funds (PEAF)

One-Time Cash Payments 

The Federal Pandemic Emergency Assistance Fund (PEAF) provides States and the District of Columbia with limited funding to provide non-recurrent, short-term benefits to assist needy families with children impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The District’s Department of Human Services (DHS) will use their PEAF allocation to provide a one-time payment to Temporary Assistance for Needed Families (TANF) and Program on Work Employment and Responsibility (POWER) families to help with expenses, such as purchasing back-to-school supplies for the upcoming school year.  

Who is Eligible? 

  • District of Columbia residents who were determined eligible for TANF or POWER as of August 1, 2022 will receive the one-time PEAF payment.

What do I need to do to access the PEAF benefit? Do eligible families need to apply?

  • DHS will automatically issue the one-time payment to eligible households via the households Electronic Benefits Transfer Card (EBT). No additional action needs to be taken for the benefit to be issued and eligible families do not need to apply.

How much will eligible families receive? 

  • Each TANF or POWER family will receive the same one-time payment amount.  The District will divide its total PEAF funding by the number of eligible families to determine the one-time payment amount. 

When will I be able to access my benefits?

  • Benefits will be issued on your EBT card before the end of August 2022.

Will receipt of the one-time payment impact my eligibility for other programs? 

  • The one-time payment will not impact your benefits or eligibility for other District public assistance programs.   

Are the limitations on how I can use the one-time payment? 

  • The one-time payment will be loaded onto eligible families' EBT cards as cash assistance. Families can use the payment just like a TANF or POWER benefit to make purchases at participating stores and approved vendors that accept EBT.  

Where did PEAF come from? 

  • Section 9201 of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, Public Law 117-2, created the Pandemic Emergency Assistance Fund (PEAF) in section 403(c) of the Social Security Act. The PEAF provides limited funding to states, including the District, to provide non-recurrent, short-term benefits to assist needy families with children impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

How do I keep my benefits safe?

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