COVID-19: Assistance Available to Undocumented Individuals
Many undocumented individuals may be struggling with finding assistance during this difficult time. Below is a list of resources and assistance available to undocumented individuals that will not put them at risk of deportation.
Disaster Relief Assistance for Immigrants (DRAI): Starting on Monday, May 18, California’s new Disaster Relief Assistance for Immigrants (DRAI) Project will accept applications to assist undocumented adults who are ineligible for other forms of government COVID-19 aid, including financial support under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and pandemic unemployment benefits, because of their immigration status.
To be eligible for disaster relief assistance, an individual must be able to provide information that they:
- are an undocumented adult (person over the age of 18);
- are not eligible for federal COVID-19 related assistance, like CARES Act tax stimulus payments or pandemic unemployment benefits; and
- have experienced a financial hardship as a result of COVID-19.
Applicants will be considered on a first come, first served basis. Please visit this webpage for more information on how to apply for the new DRAI fund.
The San Diego Immigrant Relief Fund is providing one-time, one per individual grants of up to $500 to immigrants in San Diego County who have lost all or part of their income due to the coronavirus pandemic. Eligible individuals must live in San Diego County and have experienced a loss of income. Preference will be given to those who are unable to qualify for other benefits.
United Way of San Diego County is providing financial relief through their Worker Assistance Initiative for low-wage workers who have experienced job loss or a reduction in pay since March 1, 2020 as a result of COVID-19 to help pay for utility bills.
One Fair Wage Emergency Fund provides cash assistance to restaurant workers, car service drivers, delivery workers, personal service workers and others who are in need of funds during this crisis. The funds will be temporary cash gifts to workers as funding becomes available.
The U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services has confirmed that the Public Charge rule does not restrict access to testing, screening, or treatment of communicable diseases, including COVID-19Undocumented idividuals can still see a doctor without medical insurance. This includes care you receive in the emergency room, at community and migrant health centers, free clinics, and public hospitals. If an individual does not have a doctor, call a local community health center for assistance. You can find a community health center here: https://findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov/
Free and Low Cost Services
- Multiple internet carriers are offering free or reduced-cost internet access for students and low-income families. Learn more.
- California utilities, including San Diego Gas & Electric, Sweetwater Authority, and Otay Water District suspend customer shut-offs due to non-payment.
- The San Diego Food and Diaper Bank is continuing normal operation hours and is taking necessary precautions to help make sure that food and products remain safe. There will be no immigration consequences for using these resources: https://bit.ly/341LeiJ
- Several video conferencing software companies have opened up free access to their premium features including Cisco Webex, Google Hangouts (for schools and businesses), and Zoom (for K-12 schools)
- The California Immigrant Youth Justice Alliance has developed a resource page for undocumented individuals. https://bit.ly/3bIbTDQ