Additional Counties Approved for Emergency Workforce and Disaster Unemployment Assistance (05/06/09)

For Immediate Release 
May 6, 2009  

Contact:
Robby Cunningham (850) 245-7130

 

Additional Counties Approved for Emergency Workforce and Disaster Unemployment Assistance

Tallahassee, FL Pursuant to Governor Charlie Crist’s request to obtain federal assistance for people affected by recent severe flooding in the Panhandle area, Florida’s Agency for Workforce Innovation continues to work closely with state emergency management officials and the United States Department of Labor to provide workforce and disaster unemployment assistance.

“These important federal funds will provide humanitarian relief, job opportunities and temporary unemployment compensation benefits for people in the affected counties,” said Cynthia R. Lorenzo, Interim Director of the Agency for Workforce Innovation.  “We are very appreciative for our state and federal partners’ ongoing assistance in these recovery efforts.”

NEG FUNDS

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) recently declared 11 Florida counties eligible for FEMA's Public Assistance Program, and therefore, eligible to receive federal National Emergency Grant (NEG) funds.  These counties include: Bay, Calhoun, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Liberty, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Walton and Washington counties. 

FEMA has also recently declared the following seven additional counties eligible to receive NEG funds: Escambia, Franklin, Hamilton, Gadsden, Leon, Madison and Wakulla.

NEG funds will be used to provide humanitarian assistance and create temporary jobs for people in these 18 counties.  (Read the April 30, 2009 NEG press release for more details.)

DUA FUNDS

Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) helps people who have become unemployed as a direct result of a declared disaster and who do not qualify for regular unemployment benefits.

The federal government recently approved DUA for people in 12 North Florida counties who were affected by these storms.  Those counties include: Calhoun, Hamilton, Holmes, Jackson, Lafayette, Liberty, Madison, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Suwannee, Walton and Washington.  (Read the May 1, 2009 DUA press release for more details.)

Effective immediately, the federal government has also approved DUA for people in Dixie and Gilchrist counties, bringing to 14 the total number of approved counties.

Many workers will be eligible for the state’s regular unemployment compensation program; those who are not may be eligible for DUA.  The DUA program also covers self-employed individuals, owners and workers of farms and ranches, as well as fishers and others who are not normally covered by state unemployment compensation.

WHO CAN APPLY FOR DUA

Individuals who:

  • Have exhausted entitlement to state unemployment compensation; and
  • Have been working or residing in a county for which the disaster has been officially declared; and either: 
  • Become unemployed as a direct result of a declared disaster; or
  • Are unable to reach their place of employment as a direct result of the disaster; or
  • Were scheduled to begin work and do not have a job or are unable to reach the job as a direct result of the disaster; or
  • Have become the major support for a household because the head of the household has died as a direct result of the disaster; or
  • Cannot work because of an injury caused directly by the disaster.  

HOW TO APPLY FOR DUA

Individuals may:

  • File online: www.floridajobs.org or www.fluidnow.com  
  • File by telephone at 800-204-2418, M-F 7:30 AM to 7 PM and Saturday 8 AM to 4 PM
  • Obtain information about applying for DUA at any Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) in the state.

Information required when filing:

  • Social Security number (SSN) 
  • Alien registration number and expiration date (if a non-U.S. citizen) 
  • Name and address of most recent employer(s) 
  • Name and address of employer and date work was to begin (for those scheduled to begin work but could not, due to the disaster)  
  • If self-employed, you must have proof of self-employment, to include:

    1. State or federal tax returns
    2. Financial statements
    3. Bank records of accounts or 1099 Forms
    4. Documentation necessary to support a claim may be faxed to 850-921-3938 after filing (applicant’s SSN should appear on all documents)

WHEN TO APPLY FOR DUA

For Dixie and Gilchrist Counties:

  • No later than June 5, 2009.
  • NOTE: DUA benefits are available to unemployed individuals for up to 26 weeks from the date of the disaster declaration.  The 26-week assistance period for this weather event ends September 26, 2009.

For Calhoun, Hamilton, Holmes, Jackson, Lafayette, Liberty, Madison, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Suwannee, Walton and WashingtonCounties

  • No later than June 1, 2009.
  • NOTE: DUA benefits are available to unemployed individuals for up to 26 weeks from the date of the disaster declaration.  The 26-week assistance period for this weather event ends September 26, 2009. 

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status.  If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

An equal opportunity employer/program.  Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.
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