Deadline Approaching to Apply for Disaster Unemployment Assistance

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ST. CROIX, Virgin Islands – Survivors of hurricanes Irma and Maria who lost their jobs as a result of the storms have until Dec. 29 to apply for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA).

The DUA program provides unemployment benefits and re-employment services to individuals to assist them in their recovery. The program is designed to help survivors who are unemployed as a result of a major disaster and who are not eligible for regular unemployment insurance. Individuals such as farmers, fishers, independent contractors and small-business owners, may qualify for disaster unemployment assistance.

Survivors who are out of work for at least one week as a direct result of the hurricanes are eligible to apply. Benefits may be extended for up to 26 weeks – as long as the individual’s unemployment continues to be disaster-related.

The U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) Department of Labor is assisting DUA applicants at the following locations:

  • St. Croix: USVI Department of Labor, 4401 Sion Farm, Christiansted; Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • St. John: USVI Legislature, St. John Annex, 1D Cruz Bay; Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • St. Thomas: USVI Department of Labor at 2353 Kronprindsens Gade; Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

To apply for DUA, individuals must provide proof of identity and citizenship (U.S. citizen, U.S. national or qualified alien). Survivors are also required to provide verification of employment or self-employment or provide verification about work that was to begin on or after the storms. 

Other requirements for eligibility include:

  • Be unemployed as a direct result of the disaster
  • Be able and available for work, unless injured as a direct result of the disaster
  • Have not refused an offer of employment in a suitable position
  • File before the applicable deadline
  • Not be eligible for regular unemployment insurance

     

For more information and to view other services offered by the USVI Department of Labor, visit www.vidol.gov.

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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 800-621-3362 (voice, 711/VRS - Video Relay Service) (TTY: 800-462-7585). Multilingual operators are available (press 2 for Spanish).

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

For official information on the recovery effort following the hurricanes, please visit www.informusvi.com or www.usviupdate.com. Follow us on social media at and .

To donate or volunteer, contact the voluntary or charitable organization of your choice through the National Voluntary Agencies Active in Disasters (NVOAD) at www.nvoad.org.  For those who wish to help, cash donations offer voluntary agencies the most flexibility in obtaining the most-needed resources and pumps money into the local economy to help businesses recover. The Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands also has the “Fund for the Virgin Islands” at www.USVIrecovery.org

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