Accessible Benefits Information: Reducing Administrative Burden and Improving Equitable Access through Clear Communication About Safety Net Benefits

Accessible Benefits Information:

Reducing Administrative Burden and Improving Equitable Access through Clear Communication About Safety Net Benefits

The world of public benefits is a complex one, mired with rules about eligibility, application, and renewal processes that differ from state to state and agency to agency. Published material about accessing these benefits is often just as confusing, with information that can be contradictory and spread across multiple sources.

Complex benefits information creates unnecessary barriers for people trying to understand what’s relevant to them so that they can take immediate action to receive the benefits they need. This is especially true in moments of crisis like COVID-19, where program changes happen rapidly.

As part of the Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation’s series on documenting best practices in social safety net benefits access and delivery, this guide to Accessible Benefits Information offers case studies that show how groups in Michigan, New York City, and San José use plain language, multilingual translation, co-creation and testing with residents, and technology tools to provide better information about benefits. 

Reach out to us if you have questions about this guide or want to share how your government agency or organization is making information about public benefits more accessible: beeckcenter@georgetown.edu

Associated Projects

Contributing Authors

Ariel Kennan
Ariel Kennan

Ariel Kennan

Fellow

Sara Soka

Sara Soka

Fellow