According to local media outlets in Orlando, Walt Disney World has agreed to pay its employees wages they lost when the theme park was shut down because of Hurricane Irma.
For individuals with employers which aren’t as generous, the deadline to apply for government compensation for lost wages is Oct. 16. Individuals who are self-employed can also qualify. The financial assistance is funded by the federal government but administered through each state hit by Irma. Floridians can go to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s website, Connect.Myflorida.com, to apply.
According to Benefits.gov, the U.S. government’s official benefits website, individuals who are not eligible for unemployment benefits, can apply to be compensated for lost wages because of Irma. Those who apply must live in a region declared a disaster zone by a presidential order, which includes Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe, and Palm Beach counties.
Those who apply must provide their Social Security number, check stubs, and documents to prove they were working or self-employed at the time of the storm.
Circumstances for obtaining compensation include the loss of employment, inability to reach the workplace, inability to work because of injury, structural damage to workplace, loss of power, or the person seeking compensation became the head of the household after the previous head of household died because of the storm.
In a press released, Governor Rick Scott touted the financial assistance program.
“As we all recover from Hurricane Irma, we are doing everything we can to help Floridians get back on their feet. This federal funding will provide important employment opportunities to Floridians who may have lost their jobs due to the impacts of this massive storm and will also support ongoing recovery efforts. Now, Floridians can get back to work helping those in their communities. We will continue to work together to make sure everyone has the support they need to rebuild.”
Small business owners can also apply for loans. The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program provides financial assistance to businesses damaged by the disaster. The short term, interest-free loans can be used to pay for expenses until insurance claims are paid-out or more long-term loans can be secured. Visit FloridaDisasterLoan.org for more information.