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Report 6: Together Apart, Coronavirus & Appalachia

April 23, 2020

Unemployment assistance opened up to include nearly every person who’s lost work, through no fault of their own, due to the coronavirus. 26 million people have applied as of April 23, 2020. Systems are not totally running efficiently. If you are denied benefits, find out how the appeal process works. Remember: you are eligible in most cases if you lost your job due to Covid-19 pandemic. Benefits are not only for fulltime workers.
The Federal Department of Labor has a service called Disaster Unemployment Assistance https://www.benefits.gov/benefit/597 where you can verify eligibility, call for details of the program 1-877-872-5627 and link to your state’s unemployment services:

Kentucky Office of Unemployment Insurance: http://www.kewes.ky.gov/ Information from Kentucky Career Center: https://kcc.ky.gov/Pages/default.aspx Read details of what day of the week to apply according to your last name. Then use the “File My Claim” button.

Tennessee Labor and Workforce Development: Read the new staggered schedule for applying – Weekly Unemployment Certifications Move to

Staggered Schedule (https://www.tn.gov/workforce/general-resources/news/2020/4/17/weekly-unemployment-certifications-move-to-staggered-schedule.html)
To apply https://www.tn.gov/workforce/unemployment/apply-for-benefits-redirect-2/online-application.html

Virginia Employment Commission: To apply: https://www.vec.virginia.gov/unemployed/online-services/apply-for-unemployment-benefits To file a claim by telephone number: 1-866-832-2363

West Virginia Unemployment Compensation Division Web Application uc.workforcewv.org West Virginia suggests not using cellphones and tablets to file claims. List of WV UI offices (but you will have to start with internet application) https://uc.workforcewv.org/Contact.aspx

PAYMENTS FOR ECONOMIC IMPACT If you aren’t required to file income taxes annually and believe you are due a check under the Federal stimulus funds, you can make sure that the IRS has an address for you by filing a free form.
Food for Children and Families

  1. Where to find meals and distribution of food
  2. Where to donate
  3. Where to volunteer to help
    If you know families that a running low on food supplies, use these links to find help in their area. Demand is great and these food programs can use help.

    U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
    Food and Nutrition Service. Find Meals for Kids interactive map. https://www.fns.usda.gov/meals4kids
    Special Supplement Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), How to Apply https://www.fns.usda.gov/wic/who-gets-wic-and-how-apply

    Feeding America provides a national resource base to find local food banks, like Second Harvest. Enter your zip code and find the closest distribution program: https://www.feedingamerica.org/need-help-find-food
    FoodBanks.net: put in a zip code or place and find the closest help like the Letcher County KY Food Pantry. https://www.foodbanks.net/search.php?q=
    Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) COVID-19 Child Nutrition Guidance and Meal Sites by State https://frac.org/research/resource-library/state-websites-and-meal-lists-maps
    Meals on Wheels of America: if you don’t know where your local agency is located, go to this webpage and enter your location to find nearest Meals on Wheels assistance. https://www.mealsonwheelsamerica.org/
    No Kid Hungry: Patch reports Coronavirus Meal Finder Map: Find Free Meals For Hungry Kids/Encuentra Comidas Gratis Para Niños. No Kid Hungry’s map shows where America’s kids sidelined from school by the coronavirus crisis can get access to free meals. https://patch.com/tennessee/knoxville/s/h3951/coronavirus-meal-finder-map-find-free-meals-for-hungry-kids?utm_term=article-slot-2&utm_source=newsletter-daily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter
    U.S. Department of Agricultural: USDA Implements Immediate Measures to Help Rural Residents, Businesses and Communities Affected by COVID-19 https://www.rd.usda.gov/sites/default/files/USDA_RD_SA_COVID19_CUMULATIVEUpdate04152020.pdf

    Many families are facing tough choices where they can’t make home or credit card payments. Some banks and financial institutions have offered deferred payments. Be cautious. Consider this, deferral in most cases is not forgiveness. If you get a 90-day deferral, you will still be responsible for three months of premiums, plus interest and possibly late fees. Read the small print on deals that sound too good. Federal Consumer Financial Bureau: Guide to coronavirus mortgage relief options https://www.consumerfinance.gov/about-us/blog/guide-coronavirus-mortgage-relief-options/

Immigrant Safety Fund, National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON) https://ndlon.org/immigrant-worker-safety-net-fund/

American Heart Association Grant Opportunities Voices for Healthy Kids funds
• First Aid Collective. Knoxville Mutual Aid Fund, local GoFundMe. https://www.gofundme.com/f/knoxville-mutual-aid-funds?utm_source=Week+of+April+20&utm_campaign=Highlander+VFTH+March+2020&utm_medium=email
• Groundswell’s Rapid Response Fund: A multi-issue fund, Rapid Response Fund supports organizations on the frontlines, defending the most vulnerable communities with timely, flexible grants with an emphasis on funding in states and communities where women of color, transgender people of color, and low-income women and trans people-led organizing is under-resourced. https://groundswellfund.org/rapid-response-fund/#covidrapid
• Stay Together Appalachian Youth Project. COVID-19 Youth Mutual Aid Fund The Stay Together Appalachian Youth Network and the Kentucky Student Environmental Coalition are fundraising support young people in our networks and communities impacted by COVID-19. https://www.thestayproject.net/mutual-aid.html

• Third Wave Fund’s Mobilize Power Fund is a rapid response fund that supports the leadership of young women of color, trans, gender non-conforming, queer, and intersex youth under 35 in social movements. The fund makes monthly, rapid-response grants for urgent direct action, community mobilization, or healing justice work across the U.S. and territories! bit.ly/3wavelis

About this information: This information comes from many sources relevant to Central Appalachia. If you find an item that needs updating or correction, please send it to us. We can send previous five Reports by email or they will shortly be on our website.

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Together Apart information: walter@appalachiancommunityfund.org