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Disaster unemployment benefits approved for workers impacted by landslide in Oso

Many people were affected by the landslide disaster in Oso last month, including businesses and workers.
Many people were affected by the landslide disaster in Oso last month, including businesses and workers.Photo by David Ryder/Getty Images

The Employment Security Department announced today that disaster unemployment benefits have been approved for workers and self-employed people that had work hours significantly decreased or lost their jobs altogether due to the disaster in Oso, Washington last month.

It’s important to note that disaster unemployment benefits are only for those folks that don’t meet the requirements for regular unemployment, the loss of a job or reduced work hours must have occurred as a direct consequence of the disaster, and applications need to be submitted to the Employment Security Department by May fifth for support payable the week of March 23 or after. Those that qualify would be entitled to disaster unemployment benefits between the amounts of $194 to $624 per week.

Examples of folks that could be eligible for this special unemployment benefit offering include business owners or self-employed folks that are not able to run their business; people that work at a place of business that was damaged, destroyed, or made unreachable due to a road closure; individuals unable to work due to an injury obtained from the disaster; and employees that work for a company that obtained most of its revenue from another business that was damaged or demolished in the landslide.

As announced by the Employment Security Department earlier this week, a special phone number to handle Oso disaster-related claims has been set up. More information can also be found on the Employment Security’s Snohomish County Disaster Response website.