CHICAGO (AP) – The Illinois Department of Human Services announced March Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits will be issued early to Illinois customers.

March SNAP benefits will be loaded into customers’ accounts on March 1.

“Our communities shouldn’t have to suffer because of the federal shutdown, and we’ll continue to do all we can at the state level so that Illinoisans don’t see a disruption in their SNAP benefits,” said Governor Pritzker. “Our plan will reduce the waiting time for benefits for SNAP recipients so our vulnerable residents won’t have to worry about whether the shutdown will prevent them from accessing these services.”

SNAP is a federal program administered by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and distributed through IDHS in Illinois.

February benefits were issued in January due to the previous shutdown.

Customers typically receive their SNAP benefits at different times during the month.

IDHS plans to issue April benefits between April 1 and April 10.

May benefits will be on the regular schedule.