Survivors of Natural Disasters

Relocation Supports and Resources for Survivors of Natural Disasters and Other Disasters
(Last updated September 17, 2018)

If you and your household are experiencing homelessness due to a disaster, you may be eligible for resources and support from the state and federal governments.

Various federal and state agencies and nonprofits are working to provide relocation supports and wraparound services to families and individuals from Puerto Rico impacted by September 2017’s Hurricane Maria, as well as households impacted by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma. Here are some of the documents and links:

MassLegalServices.org has put together articles and listings of information and resources for natural disaster survivors, covering topics such as FEMA benefits, evacuee benefits, housing resources, and accessing benefits such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP/Food Stamps) and unemployment benefits. This article provides more details on how households get replacement benefits through the SNAP program for food lost due to natural disaster, power loss, flooding, etc.

* September 17, 2018: The Department of Transitional Assistance has issued a reminder regarding replacement SNAP benefits for households that lose food due natural disaster or other misfortune, in response to the widespread gas explosions and fires in Lawrence, Andover, and North Andover.

From the Director of the DTA Ombudsman Unit, Sara Craven:

“SNAP policy allows for the replacement of food lost during a household misfortune, such as a fire, flood, loss of electricity, equipment malfunction (such as refrigerator or freezer) or other disaster.

Clients may request replacement benefits because of a misfortune that is restricted to their household or because of a more widespread misfortune that has impacted a town, county, state or region.

The client may report the loss orally by calling the DTA Assistance Line at 877-382-3263 or in writing within 10 days of when the loss occurred. The written statement may be submitted by uploading it through the DTA Connect mobile application, mailing it to DTA’s Document Processing Center at P. O. Box 4406, Taunton MA 02780-0420  or faxing it to 617 – 887-8765…

Clients are required to complete the SNAP-9B form (Statement of Loss/Request for Replacement Food due to a Household Disaster or Misfortune Form) and submit to DTA. Please note a SNAP-9B form does not have to be completed to report the initial loss, clients may call DTA to report the loss and subsequently submit the form.


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