Alleged Violation of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)? Creating an Effective Training Policy for Retailers Accepting SNAP Benefits

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One of the most important parts of becoming an authorized retailer that accepts SNAP benefits is to ensure that employees are properly trained in the policies of accepting food stamps.  The United States Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) requires that all SNAP authorized firms be able to demonstrate that there is an established training policy in place as well as a compliance policy.

An effective training policy should include: (1) a thorough review of Food and Nutrition and Service (“FNS”) training materials and program rules, (2) documentation of the training, (3) a refresher course once a year, and (4) documentation of the refresher course.

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USDA’s website includes all of the training material required for the thorough review of the program rules. There is a 25-page training guide, which covers all of the rules and regulations.  The training guide is available in both English and Spanish.  Additionally, the USDA has a training video, available in both English and Spanish, which reviews that SNAP rules and regulations.  Reviewing both of these sources of information will provide employees with the solid foundation required to implement rules when accepting SNAP benefits.  This training should be done within one month of hiring the employee.

IMG_0489Along with reviewing these materials, all employers should keep detailed documentation of the training.  The records should include: (1) the name(s) of the employee(s) and employer, (2) the date of employment, (3) the date of training, (4) a record of the materials reviewed, and (5) signatures of both the employee and employer attesting to the SNAP training.

The USDA also recommends that a refresher course be provided to all employees at least once a calendar year.  The refresher training should be documented with the following information recorded: (1) the name of employer and employee, (2) date of employment, (3) date of initial training, (4) date of refresher training, (5) materials reviewed, and (6) signatures of both employee and employer attesting to the refresher training.

Rincker Law, PLLC is prepared to help authorized retailers create an effective training regimen that will comply with USDA expectations.

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