COVID 19 Resources
Texas Workforce Commission (TWC)
The TWC is a state agency charged with overseeing and providing workforce development services to employers and job seekers of Texas. If your employment has been affected by COVID-19, you can apply for benefits in both English and Español by calling the TWC Tele-Center at 800-939-6631 from 8AM-6PM Monday through Friday.
- For Jobseekers
- Unemployment Benefits Services: English / Español
- Unemployment Benefits Contact Information: English / Español
- Automated Phone Service in English and Español: 800-558-8321
- Read the tutorial on How to Apply for Benefits Online, Sign up for a User ID, and apply for assistance through the Unemployment Benefits Services portal.
- For Employers
- The TWC has approved multiple policy actions to support families and programs during this crisis that can be found at the TWC’s Child Care and Early Learning resource page.
- Sign up for TWC COVID-19 updates.
Small Business Administration (SBA)
The Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses in Texas that are suffering from substantial economic loss due to COVID-19. The SBA, in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has developed Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to COVID-19. If you have questions about applying for relief from the SBA, you can contact the Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955.
- The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep workers on the payroll.
- The COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan will provide small business owners with an advance of up to $10,000.
- The Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program will provide up to $25,000 to small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender.
- Deaf Hotline: 1-800-877-8339
- Customer Service Center: [email protected]
Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA)
and the Texas Apartment Association (TAA)
The 20% of Texans that rent their homes are facing the prospect of not being able to pay their rent. The Texas Supreme Court issued an emergency order that halted evictions, including for non-payment of rent, until April 19th, but you can still be issued a notice to vacate by the Property Manager for non-payment of rent. Many entities are also offering relief on mortgage payments, and it is recommended that you contact your bank to discuss your options.
- The TAA has compiled resources for renters that includes FAQs related to COVID-19 and contact information for local groups that may be able to offer financial assistance: English / Español
- The TDHCA has also put together a list of Emergency & Homeless Services and Assistance Providers across Texas that may be able to provide financial assistance to those affected by COVID-19.
- The TDHCA is also recommending that homeowners and renters register for disaster help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
- The TDHCA has also provided information for rental owners who wish to provide emergency housing for displaced households or those who have disaster-related casualty losses
The Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC)
The PUC developed the COVID-19 Electricity Relief Plan that orders PUC-regulated water and sewer utilities to suspend disconnections for non-payment and electricity providers to suspend disconnections for non-payment. If you live in an area of Texas that is open to retail competition, the PUC has ordered retail providers to immediately offer deferred payment to any residential customer who requests one and to suspend disconnections for residential customers who have been added to the state’s unemployment and low income list due to COVID-19.
- PUC toll-free Assistance Hotline: 888-782-8477 available 24/7
- PUC Customer Protection Division: [email protected]
- Electric customers unable to pay their bills due to COVID-19 should contact the Low-Income List Administrator at PUC at 866-454-8387 to enroll in their relief program.
- FAQs on the PUC’s Response to COVID-19
Food and General Assistance Programs
Aunt Bertha’s network connects people seeking help and verified social care providers that serve them. Simply enter your zip code and you will be able to see organizations that are providing food, housing, financial, childcare, educational, job-seeking, and legal assistance near you. For those individuals who are living in the greater Houston area, the following organizations are providing food assistance to those affected by COVID-19:
- Emergency Food Program by Eternal Food Ministry
- 281-271-1730 or [email protected]
- Food Pantry by Rosenberg Richmond Helping Hands
- 281-232-4904 or [email protected]
- Disaster Relief and Emergency Response Program by The Salvation Army of Greater Houston
- 713-752-0677 or Apply Online
- The Emergency Food Assistance Program – COVID-19 by the United States Department of Agriculture
- 877-839-6325 or [email protected]