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NYC Benefits Platform: Dataset and Screening API

 

screening-api

The NYC Benefits Platform supports organizations that make it easier for NYC residents to discover and be aware of multiple benefits they may be eligible for through open resources including:

  • NYC Benefits and Programs Dataset: plain language, standardized public info for 100+ programs available on ACCESS NYC and other websites our office maintains.

  • NYC Benefits Screening API: Machine-readable calculations and criteria for benefits screening that power the ACCESS NYC screening questionnaire.

These two resources support and accelerate the development of new and public benefits-related web applications and features.

 


The NYC Benefits and Programs Dataset

Plain language, and routinely updated information regarding social safety net related benefits and services.

  • Develop new websites, or directory resources.
  • Reduce the time and costs invested in developing and maintaining content.

 

KEY FEATURES

  • Distinct data fields for info including:
    • Service or benefit offerings
    • Key details to consider
    • Any enrollment timelines
    • Available methods of application or ways to receive services
    • Customer service points of contact
  • Updates available on a weekly basis, maintained by NYC Opportunity and participating governmental agencies.
  • As new social safety net benefits and resources are available to NYC residents and added to NYC Opportunity’s products, they will be available through the dataset
  • API access through NYC Open Data and the Socrata Open API
  • Dataset content downloadable for offline use as CSV spreadsheet, RSS, XML

 

PROJECT WEBSITE
https://data.cityofnewyork.us/Social-Services/Benefits-and-Programs-API/kvhd-5fmu

 

The NYC Benefits Screening API

Enables the creation of new, specific screening tools or for public benefits screening to happen against any existing dataset of benefits.

  • Provide a holistic view of your clients’ potential eligibility based on existing information, or through the development of new screening tools.
  • Inform and better target outreach initiatives (ex: direct marketing mailers or email, case worker outreach).
  • Reduce the time and costs invested in developing and maintaining eligibility criteria.

Through the API, household data (i.e. information about a household’s income, expenses, housing situation, etc.) can be compared against screening criteria for 40+ Federal, State, and Municipal benefits and programs and a screening result will be produced, containing the potentially eligible benefit and program names and codes.

 

KEY FEATURES

  • Screening for 40+ Federal, State, and City programs (including SNAP, Cash Assistance, WIC, HEAP, and more)
  • Updates on a quarterly basis, eligibility criteria maintained by NYC Opportunity and participating governmental agencies.
  • As new public benefits are added to ACCESS NYC’s screener, they will be documented and available through the API.
  • Option to submit data for screening in bulk by formatted CSV files.

 

PROJECT WEBSITE
https://screeningapidocs.cityofnewyork.us

 

TARGET AUDIENCE

  • Organizations that serve benefits-seeking NYC residents including Governmental agencies and Community Based Organizations
  • Civic Technology Organizations delivering tools in this area

 


Video: Public Benefits Awareness & Screening: An Intro to the NYC Benefits Platform (from NYC Open Data Week 2021) | Overview Slides


PROJECT PARTNERS
50+ units across City, State, and Federal Agencies

 

HOW WE CREATED THE NYC BENEFITS SCREENING API
The rules engine for city benefits, which governs ACCESS NYC’s Public Benefits Screener is maintained by the Product Team at the Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity.

We’ve established and are maintaining a working model for comprehensive benefits screening and hope to extend the impact of this work. In Spring of 2018, our partner WebINTENSIVE provided development services to create an API to programmatically leverage the rules engine to support new screening scenarios and use cases.

 

TECHNOLOGY POWERING BENEFITS SCREENING API
The API is hosted on Amazon Web Services through the NYC Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications and is implemented with AWS Lambda for serverless architecture. This builds upon the technology underlying ACCESS NYC, including the rules engine which is built on the Drools Business Rules Management System. Learn more about the technology powering ACCESS NYC.

 

READ MORE ABOUT THE NYC BENEFITS SCREENING API
New York City releases API to clear up social service eligibility
Article | Smart Cities Dive | 4.17.2019

NYC Opportunity Launches the NYC Benefits Screening API
Blog | Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity | 4.16.2019

Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity Releases New York City’s First-Ever Benefits Screening API
Press Release | Mayor's Office | 4.16.2019

New York City unveils benefits screening API
Article | State Scoop | 4.16.2019

New York City Demystifies Social Service Benefits Screening
Article | Government Technology | 4.15.2019

Three Takeaways from Open Data 2019
Blog Post | Code for America | 3.12.2019

 

TO REQUEST ACCESS AND LEARN ABOUT HOW IT WORKS: