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Ohio Direction Card


What Is The Ohio Direction Card?

Once families have been approved for food assistance, the Ohio Direction Card- EBT which is a plastic card that looks like a credit or debit card is issued and sent to the individual or family’s address. It can be used at most grocery stores across Cuyahoga County. You can use your Ohio Direction Card to buy groceries at stores taking part in the Ohio Direction Card Program. When users make eligible grocer purchases, they simply swipe the card through a reader at the register; the amount is deducted from the total monthly benefit amount. Remember that "eligible purchases" means food or food products but excludes alcohol, tobacco and food prepared to eat immediately such as food at restaurants.

Cash Out is a different method of issuing Food Assistance benefits; with Cash Out, benefits are paid directly to you in a check. All members of the Food Assistance group must be age 65 or older or receive SSI in order to have the option.

To find stores, markets and other places that accept the Ohio Direction Card- EBT, click here to locate retailers.

How Do I Receive My Food Assistance Benefits With The Ohio Direction Card?

The Direction Card contains a computer chip. This chip keeps track of your Food Assistance Benefits. Each month you are eligible for Food Assistance Benefits, your benefits will be electronically added to your Ohio Direction Card- EBT account every month. You may use your card by placing it in the card terminal at the checkout stand. You’ll enter a five number secret code. As your monthly benefits are added to your Direction Card, the balance on your card will go up. As you use your benefits, the Direction Card balance goes down.

Changes

In order to improve the variety of food available evenly through out the month and not just for the increased demand over the first ten days, The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) has transitioned into a new 20 day issuance schedule.

In order to improve the variety of food available evenly through out the month and not just for the increased demand over the first ten days, The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) has transitioned into a new 20 day issuance schedule.

All assistance groups will not be transitioned into the new 20 day issuance schedule.

As of February 2014 a 20 day issuance schedule has been implemented for the following assistance groups:
  1. New Assistance Groups
  2. Assistance groups that experience at least a one day break in food assistance eligibility due to a failure to take a required action

If a customer falls into one of the three categories mentioned above he or she will be assigned to the new 20 day issuance schedule according to the last digit of his or hers case number. For example, if the case number of a customer is 256450, that customer will be issued their food benefit on the 2nd day of each month. 

Please see the chart below for further clarification concerning the schedule.
 

Twenty Day (20) Issuance Schedule

 Last Digit of Case

 Issuance Date

 0  2nd
 1  4th
 2  6th
 3  8th
 4  10th
 5  12th 
 6  14th
 7  16th
 8  18th
 9  20th

Department of Job and Family Services, Program Policy Services Section, Revised 4/20/14