March 30th E-newsletter Update from Legislator Kara Hahn
Responding to the continuing threat from the Novel Coronavirus, communities across Suffolk County, our State and around the world are working to protect lives. Here in New York, the State has:
- continued the requirement that the nonessential workforce work from home through April 15th;
- extended school closures until April 15th;
- postponed all school board, library board and village elections scheduled to take place in April or May of 2020 to June 1, 2020 and presidential primary voting until June 23, 2020; and
- banned until further notice, all non-essential gatherings of individuals of any size for any reason.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also issued a travel advisory for the Tristate region “to refrain from non-essential domestic travel for 14 days.” However, that Domestic Travel Advisory does not apply to employees of critical infrastructure industries, including but not limited to trucking, public health professionals, financial services, and food supply.
In addition to impacting daily life, the virus has caused major disruptions to our economy as well. If you have been impacted financially by COVID-19, there may be help for you.
If you have been furloughed or your job has been eliminated, you may qualify for Unemployment Insurance.
This past Friday, the Federal government enacted the CARES Act, which impacts Unemployment Insurance eligibility and benefits. According to the New York State Department of Labor:
The Act provides enhanced Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) for New Yorkers. Here’s what you need to know:
You may qualify to receive:
- 26 weeks of UI benefits.
- An additional $600/week until 7/31/2020. (Beginning 4/5/2020)
- An additional 13 weeks of UI benefits if you are still unemployed after 26 weeks.
If You Are Already Approved for UI Benefits:
What you should do:
- Do nothing. Your benefits will be updated automatically.
(Please do not call; it will only make it difficult for others to reach an agent.)
If You Are Filing a New UI Claim:
What you should do:
If You Are Not Traditionally Eligible for UI Benefits:
What you should do:
If You’ve Exhausted 26 Weeks of Benefits After 7/1/2019:
What you should do:
For additional guidance, please download the linked informational sheet.
Businesses across the nation continue to be financially impacted by COVID-19. If your company is struggling through this difficult time, there is help available.
The recently approved federal CARES Act includes a Paycheck Protection Program administered by the Small Business Administration that will provide small business loans on favorable terms to borrowers impacted by the current state of economic uncertainty.
The program generally targets businesses, nonprofits, Tribal businesses, and veteran’s organizations with 500 employees or less as eligible for federally insured, partially forgivable loans that can be used to cover short-term operating expenses during the economic crisis.
The maximum loan size is equivalent to 250 percent of the employer’s average monthly payroll costs (e.g., roughly 10 weeks of payroll expenses) or $10 million, whichever is less. Payroll costs are defined broadly to include wages, salaries, retirement contributions, healthcare benefits, covered leave, and other expenses.
Business Resource Links:
Victims of Domestic Violence
COVID-19’s impacts on our daily lives have made this a very difficult period in our lives. During times of fear and stress, victims of domestic violence may be even more reluctant to seek help. If you are a victims of violence call 911 immediately if in immediate danger.
Remember, if you or someone you know is being hit, pushed, verbally and/or sexually assaulted, help is available.
The numbers below can provide information, resources and a listening ear. Call anytime 24 hours a day, 7 days a week:
- Crime Victims 24 hour Hotline 631-332-9234
- Hate Crime Hotline 631-626-3156
- Sex Offender Tip line Call 1-(855) PFML TIP or 631-316-3237
- V.I.B.S. Victims Information Bureau, Suffolk: 631-360-3730 x 112
- L.I. Against Domestic Violence Hotline: 631-666-8833
- L.I. Against Domestic Violence Office Phone: 631-666-7181
- Brighter Tomorrows Inc.: 631-395-1800 Ext 110
- Crime Victim Center (formerly Parents for Megan’s Law): 631-689-2672
- Crime Victim Center (formerly Parents for Megan’s Law) All Violent Crime Hotline: 631-626-3156
- Crime Victim Center (formerly Parents for Megan’s Law) Rape Crisis Hotline: 631-332-9234
- The Retreat: 631-329-4398.
Mental Health Support Available
It may not be easy to manage your stress, anxiety levels, and mental health right now. Help is just a phone call away.
New York State has launched a hotline for free emotional support, consultation, and referral to a provider. Call 1-844-863-9314.
The Association for Mental Health & Wellness’s Mental Health Helpline is available to all Suffolk County residents who require help in finding and accessing assistance for themselves, a friend, or a family member. Call 631-226-3900 or email email@example.com.
If you have an immediate need to speak to someone or know someone in crisis, you can contact Response of Suffolk County’s 24/7 Crisis Hotline at 631-751-7500. Call the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255.
Emergency Child Care for Essential Workers
SCOPE Educational Services is providing Emergency Child Care Programs for the children of first responders, medical service providers, transit workers and where space permits, other essential workers. Programs are being run Monday through Friday from 7:00 A.M. to 6:30 P.M. at a number of locations throughout Suffolk County.
- Enrollment is on a first come first serve basis and enrollment may be limited based on space and/or staffing.
- Children must be school age Pre-K (must have turned 4 by 12/1/2019)-Grade 6. Priority will be given to the families of the school district in which the program is held.
Registration information is found online at www.scopeonline.us. Click on the red button for Emergency Child Care. Children must be registered online prior to attending. Once registration is complete, you will receive a notification by email. Children may not attend the program until all information is completed and your registration is confirmed.
Residents who have questions related to the COVID-19 should continue to visit the county website, www.SuffolkCountyNY.gov or call Suffolk 3-1-1, or 631-853-6311 if outside the county, where you will be directly connected to a live operator who can direct your call to the appropriate place.