Undocumented workers can now receive up to $4,500-Newsom says $95 million aid package provides relief for recent damages


California is providing $95 million in aid to those affected by floods, focusing on those without documentation. The Department of Social Services announced the funds will be distributed in June. Gov. Gavin Newsom previously promised state funds, but few specifics were provided.

Stack, a representative for Newsom, indicated the program is aimed at those who are difficult to reach and to protect taxpayer funds from misuse. It also seeks to assist those unsure how to access public benefits due to immigration status, as this population is often nomadic due to work. The program will be conducted appropriately to ensure those in need can access help.

Governor Newsom's office has declared that $4,500 will be allocated to qualifying households, with $1,500 for each adult and $500 for each child. Those living in counties designated as primary disaster areas and approved for FEMA individual assistance are eligible for the funds, provided storms impacted them from December 2022 to April 2023 and cannot receive FEMA aid.

To avoid fraud, nonprofit organizations will interview applicants in person and offer preloaded debit cards or a check as aid.

Local officials report that hundreds of people are ineligible for FEMA funding due to their legal status but have still been adversely affected by the pandemic, such as losing their jobs or damaging their homes and vehicles.

Advocates have highlighted that agricultural workers have been most impacted, as their income has been cut off due to flooded fields. Yet, they still need to cover family and medical expenses. Governor Newsom made a statement about Rapid Response in March, but since then, there has been no news on when the funds will become available or which nonprofit organizations will receive the grants.

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