#Roommates, as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on, many have sadly lost their loved ones to the deadly virus and were unable to give them a proper funeral due to lack of finances—but now, Congress has stepped up to provide some relief. During a recent meeting of Congress, it was formally announced that up to $7,000 will be available for reimbursement for all Americans who are eligible to receive it.
@CNN reports, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez teamed up earlier this week to introduce $2 billion in special FEMA funds for families who have not been able to afford proper funerals for their loved ones who passed away as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. During the announcement, it was confirmed that families can get reimbursed up to $7,000 for funeral expenses, with $260 million of those funds to be directly distributed to New York residents.
Eligibility for the funds will begin from the beginning of the pandemic, which started on January 20, 2020, to the end of last year, December 31, 2020. Meanwhile, Schumer said he and Ocasio-Cortez are working to keep the program in place for the rest of the pandemic. This funding is strictly targeted to families who have lost a loved one as the result of COVID-19 and there will be a strict verification process. Those applying for the funding will need to provide various forms of documentation such as the receipts and invoices that need reimbursement from funeral costs and the death certificate.
“Many of these families because of COVID don’t have money for a proper funeral and a proper burial. And that is just awful and inhumane,” Schumer said when describing why the funding is necessary. Later asked if these funds would apply to undocumented families, Ocasio-Cortez said yes and explained why those communities should not be afraid to apply for these funds.
“I think it’s completely understandable why there’s that fear there, especially over the last four years of targeting of our immigrant families. But I think right now our families, especially under a Biden administration, a Democratic Senate and a Democratic House that is prioritizing immigrant rights, including those who are undocumented, to not have fear, and to not allow that fear to further marginalize our community,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
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