The Washington State Department of Health is urging people participating in the Women-Infants-Children Program (WIC) to use their benefits before the program shuts down next week.

This would allow them to have food and other supplies in case a budget deal is not reached in Olympia. More from the news release:

Retailers who accept WIC checks when clients buy their prescribed healthy foods are reimbursed by the state. If there is a government shutdown, the state would be unable to reimburse retailers for WIC checks, WIC clinics will close, and WIC stores and farmers market growers will be unable to process WIC checks. So participants who planned to shop next week are urged to use their WIC checks by this weekend, in case there is a shutdown on Monday.
The impact is significant: About 195,000 low income state residents take part in the WIC Nutrition Program each month. WIC checks provide formula for about 27,000 infants each month. Every day, about $472,000 worth of WIC checks for healthy WIC-approved foods are processed in our state.

WIC is one of the most utilized programs in Washington state, and would be one of the hardest hit if the budget does expire with no new deal.