Covid-19 Update: Additional Community Resources
As our state continues to address the current COVID-19 crisis, regular communication is more important than ever. To keep you better informed on important issues and help provide resources we will be sending out weekly newsletter updates. In this newsletter, you will find information related to the food assistance, what to do if you cannot pay rent, resources for mental health, and other important CARES Act updates. If you know of an important issue we should be discussing please contact me or my staff with your ideas.
FOOD ASSISTANCE IS AVAILABLE TO ALL
Part of being healthy is a balanced diet, which can be even more difficult during this crisis. If you are struggling and need help finding healthy food please contact my district office for help or use one of the resources below:
Central California Food Bank: The Central Food Bank is working in partnership with community organizations and local schools to establish regular neighborhood food distribution centers during the crisis. 559-237-3663
Catholic Charities: Families who are experiencing difficult economic times can come to Catholic Charities for help feeding their families, find diapers and other essential supplies. 559-237-0851
Fresno-Madera Agency on Aging: If you are homebound and have no one to help you with groceries or meals, the Area Agency on Aging may be able to help have meals delivered to your home. 559-214-0299
Boys & Girls Clubs of Kern County: The Boys & Girls Club of Kern County is offering meals to all children who are 18 years and younger. 661-325-3730
League of Dreams/Brooklyn’s BBQ: The League of Dreams/Brooklyn’s BBQ is delivering family pack meals to families of disabled children and to the elderly in self-isolation. 661-829-7427
Emergency Food Pantry List Food Link for Tulare County has made available a list of local food pantries that are open and ready to help. (559) 651-3663
RESOURCES FOR RENT RELIEF
According to the National Multifamily Housing Council, one third of Americans did not pay their rent this month due to financial issues related to COVID-19.This data clearly shows that many families are struggling during this time to deal with the current financial situation. If you are struggling to pay rent, it is important to regularly communicate with your landlord about the problems you are experiencing and seek out ways to find additional resources. Below are a few references and referrals to help you navigate this difficult situation:
Rental Protection Executive Order: Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order, effective April 1, which bans evictions for two months. To be eligible you must notify your landlord and provide backup documentation, such as termination notices or medical bills that explain your situation. The full executive order can be found here.
Attorney General Bacerra’s Emergency Eviction Consumer Alert: Following the guidance form the Judicial Council of California, State Attorney Xavier Bacerra released further guidance for tenants who are not able to pay their full rent. His advisory includes an approved notice of inability to pay rent and the full eviction rule. Check with your local city or local jurisdiction to see if your area has additional rules or ordinances that apply to your area.
Legal Assistance is available: If you are at risk of eviction and are looking for legal assistance regarding a potential eviction the State Bar of California has a database to help you find help. This Legal Services Trust Fund provides a comprehensive list of organizations that are willing to help for free.
RESOURCES FOR MENTAL HEALTH
These times are difficult for everyone because of the Shelter in Place order. Things like depression and anxiety are normal feelings and there are resources available to help. If you or someone you know are struggling below are a few resources available.
National Alliance on Mental Illness: NAMI is a nonprofit organization that is designed for consumers and families to seek treatment and help to treat mental illness. Their “Locate your local NAMI Affiliate” database will help you find resources in your community for yourself and other family members.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA): To help address feelings of loneliness or isolation SAMHSA is offering guidance on managing mental health during and after social distancing, isolation or quarantine in English and Spanish.
CA Surgeon General: The California Surgeon General, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris has created a stress relief “playbook” to use during the COVID crisis. In addition to guidance on how to care for yourself and others, links to state services are provided to further help.
LET’S STAY CONNECTED
During this time we will be providing regular updates to the COVID-19 situation through newsletters, social media and on my website. For more current information please follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Over the last week we have provided real time updates on issues like the additional $600 available for Unemployment Insurance through the CARES Act or new regulations for COVID protection for agricultural workers and employers.
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Your State Senator,
Melissa Hurtado - SD14