What is the Coronavirus Care Fund?
The Coronavirus Care Fund was established by the National Domestic Workers Alliance to provide emergency assistance for home care workers, nannies and house cleaners to support them in staying safe and staying home to slow the spread of the coronavirus and to care for themselves and their families.
How are domestic workers being impacted by the coronavirus?
Domestic workers are on the frontlines of the outbreak, caring for those most vulnerable to the coronavirus like seniors and people with chronic illnesses. They are also caring for the children of essential workers like health care professionals. As a result, many domestic workers, especially home care workers, are unable to self-isolate or practice social distancing.
Those who do stay home, face another challenge; as low-wage workers without a safety net or paid time off, they are hit the hardest by any national crisis, including this pandemic. Poverty will be a decisive factor in how this virus will spread in the months to come. We all have to do everything we can to slow the spread of the coronavirus and that includes providing assistance to support workers in staying at home.
What will the funds be used for?
100% of funds raised will go directly to support domestic workers. Domestic workers who qualify, and whose applications are approved, can access $400 in emergency assistance that will be mailed to them as a Visa gift card that they can use just like a credit card to buy things in person or online, wherever credit cards are accepted. This emergency assistance is to be used for reasonable and necessary personal, family and living expenses incurred as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, including--but not limited to--preventive health equipment and medical care.
What is the current status of the Fund?
Since March, we have distributed funds to over 40,000 nannies, house cleaners and home care workers. At this time, we are in the process of distributing remaining funds and no longer able to accept new requests from first-time applicants.
This has been an enormous undertaking, and we are proud of how domestic workers, our supporters and allies came together to make the Fund possible. For those who donated, THANK YOU. Your generosity helped to extend the reach of the Fund far beyond our initial imagination. As we close out the Fund, you can continue to support domestic workers through NDWA’s ongoing programming--including our COVID resources for members, on-the-ground organizing via our 70+ local chapters and affiliates, products like Alia that help workers access long-term benefits, and visionary directives like our We Dream in Black Unbossed agenda.
Who is eligible for the funds? Can any domestic worker apply?
The response to CCF has been overwhelming. Since March, we have distributed funds to over 40,000 nannies, house cleaners and home care workers. At this time, we are no longer receiving new requests from first-time applicants.
La respuesta al Fonda ha sido abrumadora. Desde marzo, hemos distribuido fondos a más de 40.000 niñeras, limpiadoras de casas y trabajadoras de cuidados en el hogar. En este momento, ya no estamos recibiendo nuevas solicitudes de personas solicitando por primera vez.
Do you have to be documented to take advantage of this fund?
This fund is to support domestic workers in staying at home, including those who are sick, have family care responsibilities, and have lost work. We will not be collecting information on immigration status. Our own health depends on the health of the person next to us, and the person next to them. Everyone deserves to feel safe and healthy during this crisis and at all times.
How will the funds be distributed?
NDWA is managing the application process and distribution of funds through Alia. Alia is our movement’s platform that helps domestic workers get paid time off and other benefits. Domestic workers who qualify, and whose applications are approved, can access $400 in emergency assistance that will be mailed to them as a prepaid debit card.
How are you protecting the fund against fraud?
Our verification process is designed to minimize fraudulent claims. This includes:
- Cross checking phone and email addresses provided with matches in our existing membership database and those of our chapters and affiliate organizations.
- Requiring applicants to sign sworn statements during the application process
- Monitoring for multiple disbursements to a single mailing addresses
What other support is NDWA offering for domestic workers during the coronavirus pandemic?
The Coronavirus Care Fund was established to provide emergency relief to help workers care for themselves and their families, and to slow the spread of the virus. However, we know that for many domestic workers, staying home from work may not be an option either because they are essential personnel or because it is financially impossible to stay home.
NDWA is working to develop a national strategy to ensure that those who need to work can be prioritized for protective supplies, testing and treatment. We are also working to provide emotional support, and up-to-date information about the unfolding nature of the virus, so that risk of exposure can be minimized.