Help Is On The Way

The COVID-19 crisis has left many in our community without all or some of their source of income. Federal relief programs under the CARES Act will provide support to individuals and businesses, but these programs are still being delivered and, in some cases, details worked out.  

Stimulus checks began rolling out this week, but many will continue to wait for help. Yesterday, Governor Tate Reeves announced two programs to provide additional assistance to those in need.

Mississippi Home Help is a program that will allow funds to be distributed to individuals to assist with their mortgages. Homeowners can apply online at mshomesaver.com to submit a request. This program can provide up to six months of mortgage assistance.

The MS Department of Human Services and the MS Department of Health rolled out the MS Childcare Crisis Assistance in Isolation Response Plan. Emergency childcare centers will be opening around the state for essential workers if their traditional childcare operators are not open. Emergency assistance to pay for childcare through this program is available through the state. Details of this program can be found at mdhs.ms.gov/ccair.

 

If you have not already, NOW is the time to apply for unemployment benefits. If you haven’t been able to get through, keep trying.

We’ve been communicating with our partners in Jackson to try and implement strategies to reduce the bottleneck and get individuals processed quickly. We’ve heard stories of people submitting their applications online in the early morning hours, getting multiple people to attempt to call the hotline, coworkers helping each other walk through the online application, and other strategies to get it. Keep trying.

Individuals may qualify for benefits if:

  • you have been laid off or your employer has shut down due to COVID-19
  • your hours have been reduced as part of the COVID-19 pandemic; you may be eligible for partial unemployment.
  • you have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, or have been quarantined by a medical professional or government agency because of contact with COVID-19
  • are caring for an immediate family member who is diagnosed with COVID-19

It is important to file your unemployment claim as soon as possible. The weekly waiting period has been waived, and benefits can be delivered to you as quickly as they are processed, often within 7 days. 

If you do not qualify for unemployment, you still qualify for assistance under the CARES Act.

Assistance for filing for unemployment can be accessed anytime via phone at 888-844-3577 or visiting mdes.ms.gov/unemployment-claims/. These claims can be filled out online on a phone, tablet or computer.

Locally, the following offices are available by phone or email to individuals looking for assistance:

Mayhew Job Center

AmoryJobCenter@mdes.ms.gov               

662-243-1797 or 662-243-1801

 

West Point Job Center  

AmoryJobCenter@mdes.ms.gov

662-243-2647 or 662-243-1802

These offices are not open to the public currently and are following shelter in place guidelines set forth by Governor Tate Reeves’ Executive Order 1466.

 

While you’re waiting for your unemployment benefits, area organizations and state executive orders are in place to help.

  • No utilities will be turned off as a result of failure to pay during the COVID-19 state of emergency. We have information about this on our website.
  • School Districts in all three counties are supplying grab and go meals to students.
  • United Way offices in Clay (662- 494-8089), (Lowndes (662-370-1922), Oktibbeha (662-323-3830) counties are great resources to locate assistance available to those in need.

Remember, following the economic recession in 2008, the Golden Triangle saw one of the most significant periods of new job growth and wealth creation in the region’s history. This isn’t our first rodeo. We are going to recover and get back to work as soon as we can.

Take care and continue to shelter in place. 



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  • The workforce in Mississippi is exceptional. I’ve hired many veterans that worked in aviation during their military careers and moved back home to the Golden Triangle area. Airbus was able to use their skill sets and put them to work building multi-million dollar aircraft. The training that EMCC offers was so valuable to us, because they enabled our people to be trained in a variety of disciplines. This allowed for some of our people that had no aviation skills to be trained and hired as apprentices and grew our work force development program. People drive up to 75 miles to work for Airbus, demonstrating the work ethic and commitment of the men and women who live in Mississippi. We are very grateful for the caliber of people we are able to work with.

    Rob Boman

    Head of HR, Environment, Health & Safety

  • The PACCAR Engine Company continues to enjoy great success in hiring, training, and keeping local talent. From Assembly Operators associates, Machining Operators, to Craft Technicians, we have experienced a positive and dedicated workforce willing to learn new skills. Attracting quality new associates has not been an issue with us, but we face the same nation-wide challenges in finding associates with skilled trades. We are pleased for the results we have achieved by locating our facilities here.

    Mike Arzamendi

    Communication & Training Manager

  • This is a very business friendly area and the LINK is an excellent resource staffed with very passionate people that also know their business extremely well and they’re creative. They understand the need for speed and necessity to minimize upfront costs of building or expanding a business. As a result, GTR LINK has been very successful in bringing good manufacturing jobs to the Golden Triangle Region.

    Madhu Ranade

    General Manager and Vice President at Steel Dynamics, Inc., Columbus Flat Roll Division

  • The Golden Triangle region has offered us a very energetic workforce with a great work ethic. There has been an abundant supply of laborers and skilled candidates, all willing to learn. Through various resources in the area we have always found what we needed and our employees are dedicated to the success of our plant.

    Ray Hamer

    Human Resources Director, Steel Dynamics, Inc., Columbus Flat Roll Division

  • They’re [GTR LINK] very responsive to companies and their needs for getting questions answers and providing data and resources.

    Alan Easome

    Senior Director, New Plant Development, Yokohama Corporation of North America