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Temporary Assistance


The Department of Social Services offers temporary help for needy men, women and children. If you are unable to work, can't find a job or your job does not pay enough to meet your basic living expenses you may be able to get help. Erie County has a Work First policy that focuses on the temporary nature of cash assistance and an individual's responsibility to achieve self-sufficiency.

Emergency Temporary Assistance offers help for an urgent need or situation that has to be taken care of right away. Some examples of an emergency are:

  • You are homeless.
  • You have received an eviction notice.
  • You do not have fuel for heating during the cold weather period.
  • Your utilities are shut off or are about to be shut off.
  • You or someone in your family has been beaten, abused or threatened with harm by a husband, wife, partner, ex-partner or other member of the household.
  • Applications for Emergency Services may be accepted on the first floor of 158 Pearl Street, OR at the Temporary Assistance Specialized (TAS) teams unit, which as of July 28, 2014 will be re-located to Room 230 of the Rath Building, 95 Franklin Street; from the 6th floor of Hens & Kelly Building, 478 Main Street, Buffalo.  To contact the Emergency Services Unit by phone, call (716) 858-6265.