Contact

Shawn Yetter
Commissioner of Social Services

Telephone:
607-687-8302

Location & Phone

Physical Address - 1062 State Rt. 38
Mailing Address - PO Box 240
Owego, NY 13827

Main Phone:
607-687-8300

Hours

8:30 AM to 5:00 PM
Monday through Friday

If you suspect that a child is being abused or maltreated, please contact the NYS State Central Register in Albany by calling 1-800-342-3720.

 

The Social Services department works promote self-sufficiency and protect citizens by providing financial and social services to eligible Tioga County residents through program development, application of the law and encouragement of responsibility in an empathetic, timely and customer focused manner.

For more information on Social Services programs or to see if you may be eligible for assistance in one of our programs, please visit https://mybenefits.ny.gov.

News

Programs & Services

Person in Need of Supervision (PINS Diversion): Services are provided to a person less than eighteen years of age who does not attend school with the New York State Education Law, or who is incorrigible, ungovernable or habitually disobedient and beyond the lawful control of a parent or other person legally responsible for such child’s care, or who appears to be a sexually exploited child. PINS Diversion services are provided to the youth and their parent(s) or other person legally responsible, to improve family functioning and possibly avoid the filing of a PINS petition in Family Court which could result in a youth’s placement outside of the home. PINS Diversion Coordinator Steve Herbert may be contacted at Stephen.Herbert@dfa.state.ny.us or by calling 607-687-8333.

Protective Services for Adults (PSA): Investigation and on-going services provided to individuals 18 years of age or older, who, because of physical or mental impairments are unable to meet their essential needs for food, clothing, shelter or medical care and have no one available who is willing and able to assist them responsibly. If a person is deemed to be in need of adult protective services the department can provide or arrange for the provision of services, which may include functioning as a representative payee or guardian.

Long Term Care Services: Information and referral services to enable individuals to remain in their homes. In-home nursing assessments for the elderly and disabled in order to develop an appropriate plan of care for in-home services. Assessments for the appropriateness of nursing home placement. Recruit and certify Family Type Homes for adults who are eligible to live in this level of care. For more information, please contact Tina Lounsbury at Tina.Lounsbury@dfa.state.ny.us or by calling 607-687-8551.

  • Temporary Assistance - The Division of Temporary Assistance is responsible for administering the following financial aid programs:
  • Family Assistance - A cash benefit program providing payments to eligible households. Benefit levels are based on the household size, income and resources available and upon the needs and expenses of the household as defined by State and Federal schedules and regulations.
  • Safety Net - A program of financial assistance to needy individuals and families who do not meet the requirements for Family Assistance or Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
  • Medicaid - A program designed to help individuals pay for their medical care. Individuals may be eligible for Medical Assistance if they meet certain income, resource, age, disability and various other requirements. Chronic Care benefits primarily cover individuals residing in nursing home facilities. Income and resource eligibility levels for Chronic Care are different from income and resource levels for other Medicaid programs. Individuals in receipt of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are automatically eligible to receive Medical Assistance.
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) - The Food Stamps Program is now called SNAP, which stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The SNAP program is a nutrition assistance program that changes lives and helps communities.
    * SNAP is an entitlement program.
    * You can use SNAP benefits at farmer's markets.
    * You can purchase seeds and seedlings with SNAP.
    * You can use manufacturer's coupons with your SNAP benefits.
    SNAP is a federally funded program administered by the Tioga County Department of Social Services for the United States Department of Agriculture. The goal of the program is to provide a higher level of nutrition to income eligible individuals and families by enhancing their ability to purchase healthy food.
  • Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) - A program designed to help eligible households with heating and utility costs and with certain essential home heating equipment repairs. Eligibility is based on income and household size. Certain households such as Public Assistance, Food Stamp and Supplemental Security Income recipients may be categorically eligible.
  • Managed Care - A program available to most Medicaid recipients. A Managed Care participant accesses Medicaid services through the Managed Care Organization (MCO) he/she selected. The goal of Managed Care is to enhance access to, and availability of, primary care services, expand the network of medical services available, ensure quality health care, and establish a cost-effective health care system for Medicaid recipients.
  • Child Health Plus and Family Health Plus 

For More Information: 

New York State Temporary Assistance Programs

  • If you suspect a child is being neglected or abused please call the State Central Register at 1-800-342-3720.

The CPS/Preventive Units respond to reports of alleged child abuse and neglect that have been registered by the New York State Central Register, also known as the hotline. Services are available 24/7. The primary role of CPS is to assess whether a child is safe from immediate danger and to determine the risk of future abuse and maltreatment.

Preventive services to enable children to remain safely at home may be court ordered or provided voluntarily to families who are the subject of a CPS report to assist them in averting a disruption which could result in placement of a child in foster care.      

The Child Support Enforcement Unit (CSEU) is mandated under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act to ensure that legally responsible persons, to the best of their ability, contribute toward the support of their children. The CSEU's responsibilities include: 

  • Locating absent parents and putative fathers.
  • Establishing paternity for children born out-of-wedlock.
  • Establishing a fair and equitable order of support.
  • Collecting, accounting for, and disbursing child support payments.
  • Enforcing support orders should the legally liable parent become delinquent in paying support.
  • Establishing and enforcing medical support obligations.
  • Periodically reviewing and adjusting child support orders to ensure support obligations continue to be fair and equitable.

Client help line 1-888-208-4485

The CSEU office is located at 20 Court Street in Owego, and is open M-F 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding holidays.

Click Here for More Information: New York State Child Support Enforcement

The Employment Unit handles welfare to work activities, focusing on enabling public assistance and food stamp applicants and recipients achieve self-sufficiency through work. The Unit provides a range of services, including group orientation and assessment, one-to-one service planning, motivational training, job search and placement assistance, job readiness training, supportive services including day care and transportation, approved vocational training and Work Experience.

Child Care Services

Child Care services are provided to low-income working families and recipients of Public Assistance. This program, staffed by a DSS Day Care Specialist, is located at the Tioga County Employment Center.

The Foster Care & Adoption office provides assistance to County residents seeking information or assistance with becoming a foster parent or adopting a child. Please visit the Foster Care, Adoption & Home Finding page for more information.