Help for Ohio Travel Economy Workers
The Ohio Travel Association is updating this page as new information and programs become available.
Pay Benefits for Reduced Hours
SharedWork Ohio allows workers to remain employed and employers to retain trained staff during times of reduced business activity. The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services provides eligible individuals an unemployment insurance benefit proportionate to their reduced hours.
Due to the pandemic, there have been many changes to the unemployment system. Waiting periods have been lifted, those receiving benefits do not have to actively seek work and the definition for eligibility has been broadened. The federal CARES Act expands this program even more. Details will be available soon on implementation at the state level. Apply through Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.
NEW UNEMPLOYMENT PROGRAM FOR THOSE WHO DON'T QUALIFY FOR EXISTING PROGRAM
Starting April 24, Ohioans who are unemployed as a result of COVID-19, but who didn't qualify for regular unemployment benefits, can pre-register for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. Benefits are similar to traditional unemployment benefits, plus an additional $600 per week through July 25. Processing of claims begins in May is a retroactive. This program can assist the self-employed, part-time workers, those whose places of employment are closed, those personally effected by COVID-19 and other categories of workers. To register, visit here.
Food, Cash and Medical Assistance
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services provides food, cash and medical assistance to individuals and families in need.
Maintaining Healthcare Coverage for Your Family
Health insurers must allow employers to continue covering employees, even if the employee would otherwise become ineligible because of a decrease in hours worked per week. We know employees may be working a significantly reduced schedule right now, through no fault of their own, and we want to make sure they continue to have access to their health insurance if it’s feasible for the employer at this time. Learn more about the policies here.
Utility Payment Assistance
Ohio has received an extension of the Winter Crisis Program through May 1, and the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) through June 1. The Winter Crisis Program helps income-eligible Ohioans maintain their utility service, while HEAP provides eligible Ohioans assistance with their home energy bills through a one-time benefit applied directly to their bill. You can now also apply for these programs over the phone, instead of needing to appear in person. Visit EnergyHelp.Ohio.gov or call 1 (800) 282-0880.
Assistance for Lost Insurance Coverage
Those who do lose insurance coverage, are eligible for a special enrollment period to gain new coverage. Premium subsidies may be available for those who qualify by purchasing plans on the federal exchange. Learn more here.
Bartender Grants through the USBG National Charity Foundation
Representing the bar industry, this foundation provides grants to displaced bar employees.
Grants for Restaurant Workers through Restaurant Workers Community Foundation
This foundation provides financial assistance directly to restaurant workers, funds for nonprofits assisting the restaurant community and zero-interest financing for restaurants.
The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation posted the Restaurant Employee Relief Fund. Applications are available starting April 2nd.