Program Basics

JC Shovels LogoJC Shovels originated as an all-volunteer program in the Department of Public Works, but is now administered in a dynamic partnership between the Department of Recreation & Youth Development and  Department of Health & Human Services.

Health and Human Services assists senior citizens who are incapable of shoveling their own sidewalks and walkways, and who don’t have able-bodied, nearby family members to help them. Seniors can apply to have their homes shoveled through the Division of Senior Affairs in person, by mail, or by email.

JC Shovels Training

Dept of Recreation & Youth Development hires youth workers who are paid $9 or $15 an hour (depending on whether or not they’re 18 years of age).
Staff is supplied with hats, gloves, shovels, backpacks and rock salt so workers are prepared for the first storm.
 The JC Shovels workers’ guidelines are attached here for reference.

Positive Outcomes

By restructuring JC Shovels from an all-volunteer program to a paid youth-service program, we're providing Jersey City youth with part-time wintertime employment, and helping them feel more connected with their communities by helping their more vulnerable neighbors. This is also a great opportunity for physical activity and we’re proud that the #HealthierJC branding is on all of the hats, gloves and backpacks as a reminder that chores like shoveling are a healthy form of outdoor winter exercise. The nexus of employment, service, and physical health really represents the best of what HHS strives to be.








Qualifications for the JC Shovels Program are:
  • Participants should be disabled or 60 years of age or older.
  • Own and live in the property where the service will be provided (owner occupied, primary residence).
  • Lack the resources to shovel snow (cannot afford professional service, do not live with or near able-bodied relatives).
  • Home must be a one- or two-unit home occupied by qualifying applicants.
  • Resident must meet income requirements.
Services participants can expect to receive:
  • Workers are expected to shovel the front sidewalk and path to the main entrance of the house. 
  • Workers are NOT to shovel driveways or private walkways. 
  • If your property is on the corner, both walkways will be shoveled and a path to the street crossing will be created.
  • Workers are to shovel all walkways and paths. 
  • Workers are NOT to accept money for service being provided and NOT for any reason to enter the homes of any senior/disabled individuals.
  • Workers will be provided with shovels by the Department of Health & Human Services.
  • Shoveling will be performed within 24 hours after it stops snowing.



How do I apply for the JC Shovels Program?
Call (201) 547 4391, email, or visit the Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Seniors Affairs at the City Hall Annex, 1 Jackson Square in Jersey City.
What are the requirements for the JC Shovels program eligibility?
The recipient must be 60 years or older or disabled, and must be the owner of either a one- or two-family home. Seniors who live with or near able-bodied family members do not qualify.
Is there a cost involved with the JC Shovels program?
No, there is no cost for seniors, and no money is to be exchanged between the worker(s) and the senior/disabled individuals.
Do I have to call each time it snows?
No, once approved, you will be eligible for the entire snow season.
Is there deadline for application process?
YES. In order to provide services, Senior Affairs must have completed the application at least 72 hours prior to a snow storm.
When will the shoveling begin?
The shoveling will occur within 24 hours after the snow has stopped. Workers will only be activated for snow accumulation of 2 inches or more.
Will workers shovel my driveway and dig out my car?
No, workers will only shovel a walking path wide enough for people to pass by unobstructed.  The path will only be shoveled the length of the front sidewalk and up to the front door, including any steps to your main entrance.
Do I have to provide shovels?
No, the worker will bring a shovel and rock salt provided by the City.
Who do I contact if my walkway has not been shoveled within 24 hours after the snow?
You should contact the Department of Health and Human Services’ Division of Senior Affairs at (201) 547-4391 or e-mail
Will I receive a violation from the city if my walkway has not been shoveled?
No, once a senior/disabled resident is registered for the JC Shovels program, they will not receive a violation for failure to shovel.

Department Contact Info

  • phone(201) 547 4391
  • Health and Human Services’ 
    Division of Seniors Affairs
    City Hall Annex, 1 Jackson Square
    Jersey City, NJ 07305
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