We have been masking up to protect ourselves from spreading the coronavirus, and now we are facing another state emergency, simultaneously fighting two dozen significant wildfires. Statewide, 1.1 million acres have burned and nearly 240,000 Californians have been evacuated from their homes.
BEWARE of scams! The fires have added another layer of devastation and stress, which can cloud decisions and cause you to act on impulse. If you receive a call offering emergency assistance, relief options, and are asked to provide any person information – don’t fall for it– they called you!
Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the White House has approved California’s request for a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration. This allows people who have sustained losses in the designated areas in Northern California and impacted residents in Lake, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo Counties, to begin applying for assistance by registering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) online at https://www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362) or 800-462-7585. FEMA is encouraging people to register online whenever possible.
When registering, you will be asked to provide personal information, if you want to review your registration status, you must provide an email address. If you do not provide an email address, you will be required to contact FEMA for any updates to your registration.
People who are undocumented immigrants may be available for resources and services. For more information, visit https://www.cdss.ca.gov/Portals/13/DisasterAssistanceGuideforImmigrantCaliforniansFinal.pdf (English) or https://www.cdss.ca.gov/Portals/13/DisasterAssistanceGuideforImmigrantCaliforniansSpanishFinal.pdf (Spanish).