Rights and Responsibilities: Telephone Interviews – Sample Script

Addressing rights and responsibilities with a client is an integral part of each interview. As you may have noticed, how or where the interview is conducted can change the way this process occurs. Most of our interviews are now conducted over the phone with clients when they apply for benefits or are completing their renewal.

The following is a sample script to use when addressing rights and responsibilities with a client by telephone.

Let’s talk about your rights and responsibilities.
You have the right to equal treatment no matter what your race, color, age, sex, disability, religious creed, political belief, or national origin, the right to receive information about all DHS programs, and the right to apply for benefits at any time and to receive help on your application.  The information you give to DHS will remain confidential and your application will be completed on time.  If you do not agree with the outcome of your case or any of these rights are not met, you have the right to ask for a fair hearing.

If you believe you have been discriminated against, you have the right to file a civil rights complaint with DHS or the federal government.  If you want to file a complaint, DHS staff will explain the complaint process to you and provide you the forms to complete – or you may write your own statement.  If you ask, staff will help you fill out the complaint form and send it to the correct address for you.

Do you have any questions about your rights?

Now, we will go over your responsibilities.

It is your responsibility to be truthful, cooperate with any investigations and requests for information by DHS.  We may need to request documents to help us determine if you are eligible for benefits.  If you are unable to obtain any documents we request, contact your worker for assistance.  You must report all changes to your household circumstances within 10 days from when that change occurred.  Finally, you must allow DHS to give information to other government agencies or private organizations to get help for you.

If you receive SNAP benefits, you must agree to never sell or trade your benefits or the EBT card they come on.  You must never use someone else’s card and you cannot use food benefits on groceries that are not considered food, such as: alcohol, tobacco, or paper products.

 Do you have any questions about anything we have spoken about today?

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