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New York gets grant to hire Sandy cleanup workers

November 25, 2012 3:16:40 PM PST
New York has gotten a $27 million federal grant that will go toward hiring people to help Superstorm Sandy cleanup efforts.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the National Emergency Grant on Sunday. The money is going to go to communities that were hit hard by the storm so that they can hire people.

The state Department of Labor is administering the funds.

At an event in Brooklyn about the grant, a throng of about two dozen people were already lined up to apply for the jobs, and officials say 800 people have already applied.

Red Hook resident Quadina Louis, a single mother of six, was first in line to apply. The former home health care aide couldn't get to work after Sandy. This is her silver lining.

"It will help me get back on track with my bills, it will help me provide for my kids and make me feel a little more infependent," Louis added.

After Sandy, roughly 200,000 New Yorkers lost their jobs.

"50,000 New Yorkers have filed for storm related unemployment claims and we expect many, many more," said NYS Labor Commissioner Peter Rivera stated.

The jobs are expected to last generally about six months and pay up to $15 per hour.

APPLYING FOR A JOB The Department of Labor will assist local communities to identify and hire workers. Individuals who are interested in applying for a job under this grant are encouraged to contact the Department of Labor at 1-888-4-NYSDOL (1-888-469-7365) or by visiting www.labor.ny.gov/sandyjobs. Individuals can also visit their local Disaster Recovery Center or One-Stop Career Center.

All individuals must be unemployed to be eligible. Once hired, workers will earn approximately $15 per hour to work on short and long-term projects. The work will include cleaning and repairing damaged public structures and property in each of the nine counties declared disaster areas.

In addition to offering benefits and on-the-job experience, each worker will be given assistance in finding their next job. Eligible youth will also be certified in the Governor's New York Youth Works program.

FEMA JOBS

Individuals interested in applying for a job with FEMA should visit Governor Cuomo's Jobs Express website at http://www.labor.ny.gov/jobs/regional.shtm

The full-time, temporary positions range from Community Relations Specialists providing outreach to the disaster-stricken communities, to administrative assistants.

IDENTIFYING SITES

Governor Cuomo has directed the Department of Labor to immediately contact local public officials in affected localities to identify areas in need and dispatch cleanup and rebuilding crews. Local public officials may also submit information on projects and project sites to the Department of Labor by emailing: sandyprojects@labor.ny.gov.

The State Department of Labor with its reemployment services and one-stop career centers throughout the impacted areas will work aggressively to connect unemployed New Yorkers to additional jobs. Following Hurricane Sandy, storm related unemployment insurance claims have risen to nearly 50,000. ###

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