Updated May 4, 2020
LHiNC is gathering a list of resources to aid our neighbors in this tough time. This is an ever-expanding list, so please email us with suggested additions or updates at firstname.lastname@example.org.
State Extends Unemployment Benefit Period
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) recently announced a 13-week extension of unemployment benefits for eligible applicants who have exhausted their unemployment benefits. Learn more.
Unemployment Assistance Benefits Available for Self-employed
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits are specifically for self-employed, independent contractors, and others unemployed as a direct result of COVID-19 who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits or extended UI benefits in Minnesota or any other state. Learn more.
Energy Bill Assistance Available for Renters and Homeowners
Minnesota’s Energy Assistance Program offers eligible residents help to pay their energy bills. There have been changes made to the eligibility requirements and deadlines for applications to help those that may be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis and quarantine. It serves both renters and homeowners and provides benefits to pay for home heating ranging from $200-$1400. More info.
Other important links:
- Information on unemployment benefits
- Updates on Sick and Safe Time protections
- Hennepin County emergency help for those in financial crisis (or call 844-803-8466)
MNSure Special Enrollment
Governor Walz announced a 30-day special enrollment period (SEP) for qualified individuals who are currently without insurance. This SEP, which began Monday, March 23 and runs through April 21, will allow uninsured individuals 30 days to enroll in health insurance coverage through MNsure.org.
Individuals seeking coverage can visit MNsure.org to complete an application and enroll in coverage. Plans selected by April 21 will have a retroactive coverage start date beginning April 1.
Food Shelves and Meal Providers
- Metro Meals on Wheels
- Minnesota Food Helpline: 1-888-711-1151
- Second Harvest
- Joyce Uptown Food Shelf
- MPS is providing meals for children at 50 locations
- Other Food shelves and their locations in Minneapolis
YMCA locations across Minnesota are providing School Age Care (grades K – 6) for Essential Employees and Critical Workers. Open Monday – Friday 7:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. through May 4. Cost: $40 per day. Financial assistance is available. Registration: First come, first served. To register, please go to ymcamn.org/mnchildcare or call 612-230-9622.
MPS is also providing child care services for emergency/health professions. More information.
MPS is providing a Mental Health Support Line for students, families and staff. Call 612.767.4158. More details.
Resources for Minneapolis Small Businesses
Small Business Relief Program from Hennepin County
The Small Business Relief Program is designed to help small local businesses meet immediate financial needs. Emergency forgivable loans available up to $7,500 and can be used to pay for critical operating expenses, such as utilities, rent, mortgage, and payments to suppliers. The application period is currently open and will run through May 8. More info.
There are several other resources available to support small businesses, independent contractors, and non-profit organizations that shut their doors or changed their operations to help prevent the spread of the Coronavirus.
- Visit the City of Minneapolis Coronavirus FAQs for business
- Check out this Guide for Small Businesses from Minnesota DEED.
- The Office of Mayor Jacob Frey is hosting open calls with the business community every Friday at noon. Register here to participate; you can also submit your questions in advance online.
Also, Minnesota small businesses can now apply to the Small Business Administration for loans if they are facing losses from COVID-19. Online applications for these loans are open to Minnesota businesses at: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/