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Northeast Arkansas tornado victims can now apply for disaster unemployment assistance

People in Northeast Arkansas impacted by the December tornadoes can now apply for disaster unemployment assistance through February 2.

The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services began accepting applications on Monday, January 3 for people living in Craighead, Jackson, Mississippi, Poinsett, and Woodruff counties who lost their job as a result of severe storms that came through the region on December 10 and 11.

According to the news release, disaster unemployment assistance is available to victims who:

  • Worked or were self-employed or were scheduled to begin work or self-employment.
  • Can no longer work or perform services because of physical damage or destruction to the place of employment as a direct result of the disaster.
  • Can establish that the work or self-employment they can no longer perform was their principal source of income.
  • Do not qualify for regular unemployment benefits from any state.
  • Cannot perform work or self-employment because of an injury as a direct result of the disaster; or
  • Became the breadwinner or major support of a household because of the death of the head of household.

Claims can be filed at state Division of Workforce Service offices in Jonesboro, Newport, and Blytheville Monday through Friday from 8 A.M. to 4:30 P.M. Those applying will need to bring a copy of their government issued photo ID, Social Security card, the name and address of their last place of employment, and documents verifying income such as income tax statements or a recent pay stub.

There is also a free webinar on Thursday, January 6 at 1 P.M. to provide information on laws protecting workers during a natural disaster. More details about the webinar are available by contacting Audrina Lange at 501-221-4621 or at Lange.Audrina@dol.gov.

You can access the webinar through this link. Registration is not required.

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