General Assistance

Every county in California is required to provide relief and support to all residents who are not supported by their own means, by friends or relatives, by other public funds, or by other assistance programs. In Contra Costa County, General Assistance is the program that provides temporary assistance to individuals who are not eligible for federal or state-funded cash assistance.

Each county’s program is established by its own Board of Supervisors. Its policies and regulations are subject to change by the Board of Supervisors depending upon the funds available to the program.

Purpose of the General Assistance Program

General Assistance is a short-term, employment-focused program, for unemployed persons with no other means of support. General Assistance provides continued aid for disabled or unemployable persons while applying for and securing a continuing source of support, such as Supplemental Security Income/State Supplemental Payment (SSI/SSP).

Any resident of Contra Costa County may be eligible for General Assistance and proof of residence may be required. You must have lived in the county for at least 15 days and be a legal permanent resident or US Citizen. Employable persons can receive the General Assistance payments for a maximum of 90-days in a twelve-month period. Disabled individuals with medical verification can receive General Assistance continuously while they are disabled.

  • Disabled residents who are applying for other forms of continuing support, or who are not eligible for other support
  • Residents whose earnings are not more than the maximum allowable grant
Whether a person is eligible for General Assistance depends on a number of factors such as employment earnings, other income, property value, residency and citizenship status. A full financial eligibility determination is made at the time of application and throughout the period of assistance.
  • All persons without verified disability causing them to be unemployable must be available full time to work or seek employment.
  • Persons with a substance abuse problem must participate in a treatment program.
  • Individuals who are deemed totally disabled during 12 months or longer must apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
  • All General Assistance applicants and recipients must cooperate with the Welfare Early Fraud Detection and Prevention unit. All General Assistance applicants and recipients are fingerprinted to prevent welfare fraud.
  • Pregnant women are eligible to General Assistance during the first two trimesters of the pregnancy. They may be eligible to CalWORKs in the last trimester of the pregnancy.
  • General Assistance recipients must submit a form reporting any income or property received, as well as changes in employment, vocational training or education, address, living arrangements, etc.
Grant amounts vary according to the number of people in the household and the employability status of the recipient. Note that grant amounts may change from year to year.

  • One employable person: $336 per month
  • One disabled person: $375 per month

53% of the monthly General Assistance payment is for housing and 47% for food, personal needs and transportation. The rent portion is sent directly to the landlord.

All applicants must apply for General Assistance in person at any of our Employment & Human Services Department locations. The application for General Assistance includes completing all the application forms, signing the cooperation agreements, providing all the required verifications and attending two mandatory appointments. There are three General Assistance units located in Contra Costa County.

If you want to apply or get more information on your eligibility to General Assistance, please call or visit the nearest office.

East County Central County West County
4545 Delta Fair Boulevard
Antioch, CA 94509
(925) 706-4980
400 Ellinwood Way
Pleasant Hill, CA 94523
(925) 602-9379
1305 Macdonald Avenue
Richmond, CA 94801
(510) 412-3000

Offices in each location are open Monday – Friday, 8:00 am – 12:00 pm and 12:30 pm – 5:00 pm

Language and disability accommodations are provided

For questions and assistance, please call the 24 hour toll free automated information line:
1 (877) 505-4630