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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

City of St. Louis Releases Criteria for $500 Direct Cash Assistance

Posted By on Tue, Nov 30, 2021 at 4:23 PM

click to enlarge St. Louis City Hall. - DOYLE MURPHY
  • St. Louis City Hall.

St. Louisans will soon be able to apply for $500 in direct cash assistance, the mayor’s office announced today.

Over the summer, Mayor Tishaura Jones and the Board of Aldermen fought over how to spend federal relief funds, specifically a slice of the money going toward direct cash payments for residents in need. The payments were added to the spending plan after a long battle, but since then they've been in limbo as the city worked to hammer details out on the program.

Residents will have to wait until December 18 to apply for the funds, but can now see the eligibility requirements online.

Citizens of the city must be at or under 80 percent Area Median Income and have suffered a loss of income from the COVID-19 pandemic, such as cut hours, job loss, treatment or funeral expenses.

“Direct cash assistance will go far in helping families across our city support themselves and put food on the table,” St. Louis city's Department of Human Services director Yusef Scoggin said. “Before applications open, we are urging interested St. Louis residents to prepare and organize the material they will need to apply. We are working as quickly as possible within the program parameters that were proposed and passed by the Board of Aldermen to begin the application process and deliver more than 9,000 St. Louis families the support they need.”

The city expects to be able to help around 9,300 families, according to its website. Only one household member will be able to receive the funds when applications open. Once approved, residents will receive their payment through cell phone or by mail, but more information on distribution is expected at a later time. After applying on the city’s website, you’ll be able to receive updates on the status of your application until a decision is made.

Unhoused people can apply for the funds, but must go through a homeless services provider that has access to the Homeless Management Information System database; the provider will have to submit the application on their behalf. Undocumented residents are also welcome to apply and need to apply through a non-governmental partner agency who has a 501(c)3 and works with the undocumented population. The agency representative must electronically sign with the undocumented resident.

In-person application workshops will be available by appointment for those without internet access, provided by the United Way of Greater St. Louis, but no dates are available yet.

Applicants will need proof of residency and income when they apply. View the requirements on

Follow Jenna on Twitter at @writesjenna. Email the author at [email protected]
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