New Mexico government cash assistance programs.

The cash assistance programs in New Mexico are run by the Human Service Department and local Family Community Resource Center. The two options available for struggling families include TANF welfare, which is for very low income families (or single mothers or dads) with children and the other resource is General Assistance (GA) which is for households with disabled members. The cash can be used to pay for basic needs, shelter, rent, food, medical bills, and other critical expenses.

Any New Mexico resident who is interested in learning more needs to apply at their local Family Community Resource Center. There are case managers who will go over the application process, provide calculators on how much the average monthly payment will be, and they will discuss other terms and conditions. More details on the two programs are below.

Type of cash assistance programs in New Mexico

The New Mexico Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, also called TANF or sometimes referred to as welfare, is for very low-income families or those living in or near poverty. A monthly payment is provided either on a debit EBT card or transferred into the household’s bank account. While the amount of the cash paid out by the government will vary each month based on family size/number of children, in New Mexico the average payment is about $335 per month.

TANF funds can be used to pay the bills that a family needs to survive. The funds help keeps the parent(s) with the kid and keep the household together. There may be money to pay for expenses such as rent or mortgage payments or the groceries the family needs to eat. Other money can pay for utility or heating bills. Of course, New Mexico TANF pays for educational and job costs, and those will be gasoline, clothing, car repairs for work, and similar expenses.

Applications are done at the Family Community Resource Centers, which is part of the Human Services Department. The staff will go over the payment amounts and calculate them for you. But in general, TANF has a work/training/educational component. So jobs and self-sufficiency is stressed. The applying household must have a child under the age of 18, who is in school. The application and approval process take up to 45 days.





Households with a disabled member can also apply for financial help. This program is known as the New Mexico General Assistance program. This form of financial aid is only for very low-income families as well. This program can’t be combined with TANF grant; it operates separately.

In addition, if the applicant receives SSI from the federal government, this will generally exclude them from General Assistance in the state of New Mexico. However, the Human Service Department can make some exceptions on a limited basis. But the applicant will always need to be a disabled adult with a child or more than one at home. There are also many other national and regional disabled financial assistance programs.

The free cash can often be very useful to a lower income disabled New Mexico household. The government funds can not only pay for their basic needs (housing, food, utilities) but also some of what may be required for their disabled. Examples of that may be medical equipment, any prescription medications they need, crutches, wheelchairs, and even improvements to their home.

Applications to New Mexico TANF or General Cash Assistance

Family Community Resource Centers have case managers on site who can help residents apply. They will go over the income requirements, have calculators to determine the amount of monthly payment, and provide other support. They can also review other benefits, including food stamps or low-income housing, in addition to cash assistance. Stop by a center, or dial (800) 432-6217 to reach the New Mexico Human Service helpline.




By Jon McNamara

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