Partnership with Google.org will help New Yorkers find social services

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ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10)- The state is trying to make finding assistance online for struggling New Yorkers easier through a partnership with Google.org. The “Find Services” app will give users information on social services.

Upon answering a series of questions users will be given a ranked list of potential services with a description and information on how to apply.

“COVID-19 has caused (an) unprecedented demand for social services in New York, including families and individuals who have never relied on social programs before. This new web application, the result of a public-private partnership, will provide New Yorkers with a user-friendly, stigma-free resource to get the assistance and relief they need,” said Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The six-month collaboration between the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA), Office of Information Technology Services, and 10 full-time, pro bono Google.org fellows also allows other government agencies to build on the application. More than 100,000 New Yorkers accessed the application over a three-week pilot period, according to the Governor’s office.

The web application is part of the New York State COVID-19 Tech ‘SWAT’ Team that was announced by Governor Cuomo in March. Forty projects have been completed under the program that involved 25,000 volunteer hours and saved taxpayers roughly $14 million.

“Now more than ever, it is critical for eligible New Yorkers to have easy access to programs designed to help them and their families in their time of need. This new web application expands our ongoing efforts to provide a stigma-free platform for individuals and families to explore and familiarize themselves with social programs that can make an enormous difference in their lives,” said OTDA Commissioner Mike Hein.

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