Unemployment takes its toll on Chenango

NORWICH – Unemployment continues to hit Chenango County hard with more families in need of social services assistance. There are about 22 percent more caseloads compared to last year, according to Department of Social Services Commissioner Bette Osborne.

With the winter months upon us, the number of households applying for home heating assistance is up by 1,000. Other services, such as Medicaid, food stamps and cash assistance amounts are also up across the board.

Child Protective Services is handling 1,000 more families, for example. “That’s higher than we’ve seen in years,” Osborne said.

Actual numbers of those in need are difficult to track as a specific “case” could represent a repeat customer to DSS and households could have more than one child per family.

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