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Storm job loss may be covered

People whose jobs were affected by the severe snowstorm here two weeks ago may be eligible for federal financial help, State Labor Commissioner Linda Angello announced Thursday.

"I strongly urge unemployed residents in the affected counties to apply for every state and federal assistance program available to them, including Disaster Unemployment Assistance," she said.

The state Labor Department will process the claims and disperse payments.

To apply, people first must apply for unemployment insurance by calling the state Labor Department at (800) 209-8124 on a Monday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. and tell the representative that they are filing due to the snowstorm.

Those who do not qualify for unemployment insurance will be mailed an application for Disaster Unemployment Assistance. Applications must be filed by Nov. 26. Benefits are payable for the period beginning Oct. 16 and ending April 29.

To be eligible for weekly benefits, unemployment must continue to be a direct result of the disaster. Unemployment from a disaster includes:

*Injuries from the disaster that make someone unable to work.

*A workplace damaged or unreachable because of the disaster.

*Inability to travel because of the disaster.

*Inability to start a job because of the disaster.

*Becoming the breadwinner or major support of a household because of the death of a former head of household in the disaster.

*Losing a majority of income because of a disaster-related reduction in business.

e-mail: citydesk@buffnews.com

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