Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants

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Program Overview

The Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants is $7,940,000 of funding for direct cash assistance to Seattle’s most vulnerable low-income immigrant residents and their households. This program prioritizes applicants who were ineligible for federal CARES Act Economic Impact Payments (also known as a “coronavirus stimulus check”) and state unemployment insurance based on their immigration status.

If you are ready to apply, go to the online application here.

Timeline

  • Application open period: 3 weeks, from October 15, 2020 to November 5, 2020
  • Application review period: 2 weeks, from November 9, 2020 to November 22, 2020
  • Award decisions (approved or denied): November 23, 2020 to November 30, 2020
  • Payment disbursement: After December 1, 2020

Award Amounts per Household, (dependent on household size):

  • $1,000 - $3,000

Eligibility Criteria

To apply, you must meet ALL of the requirements below:

  • Be 18 years old or older

AND

  • Live in OR attend school in OR work within the Seattle city boundaries

AND

  • Were ineligible for federal CARES Act Economic Impact Payment (also known as a "coronavirus stimulus check") due to immigration status

AND

  • Were under 50% of the median household income in Seattle in the past 9 months. The income eligibility chart can be found below.
    For example, if you are applying for a family of four, and your household total income between January 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020 is less than $41,513, then your family would be eligible.
INCOME ELIGIBILITY CHART
Household
Size
Total Household Income Between
January 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020
1 $29,063
2 $33,225
3 $37,350
4 $41,513
5 $44,850
6 $48,150
7 $51,488
8 $54,788

 

Summary of Privacy Policy

The nonprofit organization Scholarship Junkies is responsible for collecting the personal information you voluntarily submit on the online application for the Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants. Scholarship Junkies has also instituted appropriate physical, electronic, and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure your information. They do not voluntarily share your data with government entities, including the City of Seattle.

Ready to Apply?

If you are ready to apply, go to the online application here.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

To apply, you must meet ALL of the requirements below:

  • Be 18 years old or older

    AND
  • Live in OR attend school in OR work within the Seattle city boundaries

    AND
  • Were ineligible for federal CARES Act Economic Impact Payment (also known as a "coronavirus stimulus check") due to immigration status

    AND
  • Were under 50% of the median household income in Seattle in the past 9 months. The income eligibility chart can be found below.
    For example, if you are applying for a family of four, and your household total income between January 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020 is less than $41,513, then your family would be eligible.
INCOME ELIGIBILITY CHART
Household
Size
Total Household Income Between
January 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020
1 $29,063
2 $33,225
3 $37,350
4 $41,513
5 $44,850
6 $48,150
7 $51,488
8 $54,788

The application period opens Thursday, October 15 at 8:00 am and closes on Thursday, November 5 at 11:59 pm. You can submit your application at any time during this period. Late applications will not be accepted.

You will need documents that confirm your identity and Seattle residency. The table below provides examples of documents you can use. Please ensure you have a clear copy of one item from List A or one item from both List B and List C.


[List A]
Documents that Confirm both Your Identity and Your Seattle Residency
[List B]
Documents for Confirming Your Identity
[List C]
Documents Confirming Your Seattle Residency
  • Washington State Identification Card showing full name and Seattle address
  • Washington State Driver License showing full name and Seattle address
  • Current student identification card from a school located in Seattle
  • Any utility bill showing your full name and Seattle address
  • Cell phone bill or internet bill showing your full name and Seattle address
  • Insurance statement showing your full name and Seattle address
  • Bank statement showing your full name and Seattle address
  • 2019 tax return showing your full name and Seattle address
  • Paystub from employer showing your full name and your Seattle residency address or Seattle employer address
  • Washington State Identification Card showing full name and Seattle address
  • Washington State Driver License showing full name and Seattle address
  • Student identification card from any school
  • Passport from any country
  • Consulate card
  • Enrollment confirmation letter from school located in Seattle
  • Rent receipt showing your full name and Seattle address

Signed and dated letter* stating the full name and phone number of the person writing the letter from the following entities:

  • Landlord acknowledging Seattle residency
  • Employer located in Seattle acknowledging your current or previous employment
  • A staff member from your school located in Seattle acknowledging your current enrollment
  • A staff member at an organization that provides services or case management acknowledging Seattle residency
  • A representative from your place of worship acknowledging Seattle residency

*You may use this letter template for this application.

Due to limited funds, we are unable to serve everyone. Some eligible applicants might not receive financial support.

Due to limited funds, we are unable to serve everyone. The review process is NOT first-come, first-served. To support those with the most need, we are prioritizing applicants based on the following criteria that are listed in no particular order:

  • Single parents/caregivers.
  • Housing status.
  • Financial need.
  • Access to Washington State Unemployment Benefits.
  • Risk of severe illness from a COVID-19 infection.
  • Survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, or human trafficking.

According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), "disaster relief" benefits, such as this program, will not be considered in determining whether an individual is a public charge. You can also read this USCIS Public Charge Fact Sheet for more information. If you have questions about your immigration status and/or use of benefits, you should speak with an immigration attorney or DOJ-accredited representative.

If you are a lawful permanent resident/green card holder, receiving financial aid from the Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants will not impact your ability to become a U.S. citizen. It will also not impact the ability of a lawful permanent resident/green card holder family member to become a U.S. citizen. If you have questions about your immigration status and/or use of benefits, you should speak with an immigration attorney or DOJ-accredited representative.

The nonprofit organization Scholarship Junkies is responsible for collecting the personal information you voluntarily submit on the online application for the Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants. To help prevent unauthorized access, maintain data accuracy, and ensure the correct use of information, Scholarship Junkies has instituted appropriate physical, electronic, and managerial procedures to safeguard and secure the information they collect. They do not voluntarily share your data with government entities, including the City of Seattle. You can learn more about the Scholarship Junkies comprehensive Privacy Policy here (English only).

We are only able to offer the application through this online portal that you can complete via an Internet-connected computer or mobile device. Our partner organizations are offering over-the-phone assistance and may be able to help you apply if you do not have access to an Internet-connected device. Please contact one of the organizations below for assistance:

  • African Working Group: 253-503-9043
  • Amigos de Seattle: 206-471-4482 
  • Casa Latina: 206-686-2629 
  • Chinese Information Service Center (CISC): 425-410-6411
  • Community Response Alliance: 206-618-5794
  • Consejo Counseling and Referral Service: 206-461-4880
  • El Comité: 833-326-6483
  • Entre Hermanos: 206-322-7700
  • Korean Community Service Center: 425-776-2400
  • Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle (MÁS): 206-658-4644
  • Organización Centro Americana: 206-851-6925
  • Refugee Women's Alliance (ReWA): 253-859-6197
  • Sea Mar Community Health Centers: 206-764-4700
  • St. James Cathedral Immigrant Assistance: 206-382-4511
  • Villa Comunitaria: 206-767-7445
  • Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN): 844-724-3737
  • West African Community Council (WACC): 206-636-9882

  • One adult is able to receive a one-time payment of $1,000.
  • A couple (two adults) is eligible to receive a one-time maximum payment of up to $2,000.
  • Couples, parents, or caregivers with children are eligible to receive a one-time payment of up to $3,000.

Eligible applicants are only able to receive a one-time payment.

See Question #13.

There are four options for receiving payments:


Option How long will it take to receive payment?
How will I receive payment?
Check* 7-14 days after the application period is closed and the award decisions are made. Mail via postal service to the mailing address you provided.

Physical Mastercard Gift Card**

7-14 days after the application period is closed and the award decisions are made. Mail via postal service to the mailing address you provided.
Digital Mastercard Gift Card 1-2 days after the application period is closed and the award decisions are made. Email to you via the email address you provided.
Direct Deposit 2-5 days after the application period is closed and the award decisions are made. Transfer to the direct deposit info you provided.

*Physical checks are void after 90 days.

**Physical Mastercard Gift Cards are void after 12 months.

Yes. You may apply if you live outside of Seattle, but only if you or someone in your household works within the Seattle city boundaries OR attends school within the Seattle city boundaries.

This funding is intended for any immigrant ineligible for federal CARES Act stimulus aid, (see Question #1). The City of Seattle is not permitted to inquire about the immigration status of any person as per Ordinance 121063. This means we do not ask about immigration status in the Seattle COVID-19 Disaster Relief Fund for Immigrants application form.

Only one of you should apply for your household. A couple (2 adults) is eligible to receive a maximum payment of $2,000. 

Each family should submit one application for that family.

Each adult should submit one application for themselves.

Yes. Children should be included in your application, as long as you are eligible, as per the criteria listed in Question #1.

If you are a caregiver or a guardian of a minor child that is not your biological child, adopted child, or stepchild, you can submit a separate application on behalf of that child as long as the child is eligible for this fund.

Yes. If you live outside the city of Seattle AND your previous place of employment within the timeframe of January 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020 was in the city of Seattle, then you should still apply. You will need to submit a document proving your previous place of employment was in Seattle. See Question #3 for a list of approved documents.

Eligible applicants without permanent housing should still apply. You have two options:

  1. If you are eligible and have an email, you may be able to receive funds through a digital gift card.
  2. If you are eligible and prefer to receive a physical check or gift card, our partner organizations may be able to help. For instance, you may be able to use an organization's mailing address to receive a physical check. Please contact one of the organizations below for assistance:
    • African Working Group: 253-503-9043
    • Amigos de Seattle: 206-471-4482 
    • Casa Latina: 206-686-2629 
    • Chinese Information Service Center (CISC): 425-410-6411
    • Community Response Alliance: 206-618-5794
    • Consejo Counseling and Referral Service: 206-461-4880
    • El Comité: 833-326-6483
    • Entre Hermanos: 206-322-7700
    • Korean Community Service Center: 425-776-2400
    • Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle (MÁS): 206-658-4644
    • Organización Centro Americana: 206-851-6925
    • Refugee Women's Alliance (ReWA): 253-859-6197
    • Sea Mar Community Health Centers: 206-764-4700
    • St. James Cathedral Immigrant Assistance: 206-382-4511
    • Villa Comunitaria: 206-767-7445
    • Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN): 844-724-3737
    • West African Community Council (WACC): 206-636-9882

Washington State is also offering a similar financial aid program, the Immigrant Relief Fund. You can apply here: www.immigrantreliefwa.org. You can also find other COVID-19-related assistance programs at the City of Seattle COVID-19 Community Resources page: seattle.gov/covid-19.

Due to the anticipated high number of applications, there will not be an appeal process. Washington State is also offering a similar financial aid program, the Immigrant Relief Fund. You can apply here: www.immigrantreliefwa.org. You can also find other COVID-19-related assistance programs at the City of Seattle COVID-19 Community Resources page: seattle.gov/covid-19.

On August 21, 2020, Mayor Jenny Durkan, Council President M. Lorena González, Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda, and Councilmember Tammy Morales announced a joint $45 million COVID-19 relief package. Of this package, the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) received $9 million in new funding from the City's general fund to provide assistance to Seattle's low-income immigrant workers and households who have experienced economic hardship caused by the COVID-19 crisis. This funding includes $7.9 million to be used for direct cash assistance to low-income immigrants. The remaining $1.1 million will be used for language access initiatives including outreach partnerships with community-based organizations to ensure that English language learner (ELL) residents know about this new program, for other financial aid programs and services, and for the staffing and administration of these funds.

In order to identify fraud, avoid duplicates, and maintain household disbursement limits, Scholarship Junkies has developed several mechanisms to screen and check applicants to spot discrepancies, which includes a thorough application review process, spam filters, and address verification. They may also contact applicants via phone or text if they detect application issues. You can learn more about the Scholarship Junkies multi-data point fraud protection policy here (English only).

If your household submits multiple applications by mistake, Scholarship Junkies will be able to identify that multiple applications from the same household were submitted and will review the application that conveys the higher need. They may also contact applicants via phone or text if they detect application issues.

Please contact one of the organizations below for assistance:

  • African Working Group: 253-503-9043
  • Amigos de Seattle: 206-471-4482 
  • Casa Latina: 206-686-2629 
  • Chinese Information Service Center (CISC): 425-410-6411
  • Community Response Alliance: 206-618-5794
  • Consejo Counseling and Referral Service: 206-461-4880
  • El Comité: 833-326-6483
  • Entre Hermanos: 206-322-7700
  • Korean Community Service Center: 425-776-2400
  • Movimiento Afrolatino Seattle (MÁS): 206-658-4644
  • Organización Centro Americana: 206-851-6925
  • Refugee Women's Alliance (ReWA): 253-859-6197
  • Sea Mar Community Health Centers: 206-764-4700
  • St. James Cathedral Immigrant Assistance: 206-382-4511
  • Villa Comunitaria: 206-767-7445
  • Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network (WAISN): 844-724-3737
  • West African Community Council (WACC): 206-636-9882