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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 29, 2013

Contact:   

Jon Ebelt, Public Information Officer, DPHHS, (406) 444-0936
Chuck Council, Communications Specialist, DPHHS, (406) 444-4391

DPHHS to discontinue temporary public assistance hotline number

The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services announced today that a temporary toll-free hotline set up to address customer concerns related to its offices of public assistance will cease operation at the end of May because of declining use. 

DPHHS introduced the hotline in early 2013 during implementation of a new eligibility system in the county offices of public assistance. Increases in the volume of calls and workloads in the local county offices at this time led DPHHS to implement the hotline as a stop gap measure to handle more calls and address concerns from the recipients of various public assistance programs. 

"The hotline was a valuable tool over the past several months for both our clients and staff,: said DPHHS Human and Community Services Division administrator Jamie Palagi. "However, the calls have decreased substantially, so it’s time to discontinue the hotline. Our number one priority is focusing on quality customer service and providing a timely response to our clients when they call our local Offices of Public Assistance. If we need to use the hotline again in the future, we will."

Through the end of May, callers to the temporary toll free hotline will receive contact information for their local OPA offices in order to redirect the calls prior to the number’s discontinuation. 

Contact information for all Montana Offices of Public Assistance is available at http://www.dphhs.mt.gov/contactus/humancommunityservices.shtml

Page last updated 05/30/2013