Farmers can apply for Disaster Unemployment assistance

Published 10:42 am Friday, September 30, 2011

RALEIGH — Those with 9-to-5 jobs are not alone in qualifying for federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance in the wake of Hurricane Irene.

North Carolina Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler reminds farmers and farm workers affected by the hurricane to apply for the unemployment aid before time runs out.

Farmers and their workers in 35 North Carolina counties declared as federal disaster areas are eligible to apply. The registration deadline for all four Roanoke-Chowan area counties (Bertie, Gates, Hertford and Northampton) is Wednesday, Oct. 5.

Farmers meeting the following criteria may be eligible for benefits:

Individuals who are unemployed due to the disaster, and do not qualify for regular unemployment insurance benefits;

Self-employed individuals and small-business owners who lost income due to the disaster;

Individuals who were prevented from working due to an injury caused by the disaster;

Individuals who have become the major supplier of household income due to the disaster-related death or injury of the previous major supplier of household income;

Individuals who are unable to reach their job or self-employment location because they must travel through the affected area and are prevented from doing so by the disaster;

Individuals who were to commence employment or self-employment but were prevented by the disaster.

Farmers and workers may contact the ESC by email at or by calling 1-866-795-8877 to apply for DUA benefits. Individuals are encouraged to file as soon as possible.

The identical criteria, registration deadline and contact information applies to anyone whose employment was affected by Hurricane Irene.