The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) declared COVID-19 a nationwide public health emergency on January 27, 2020, enabling eligible applicants to request funding for Disaster Recovery Dislocated Worker Grants (DWGs). The President also declared a national emergency on March 13, 2020. Economic Recovery DWGs are also available to states and other eligible applicants that are affected by major economic dislocations, such as mass layoffs. The National Dislocated Worker Grant Program Guidance transmitted by Training and Employment Guidance Letter No. 12-19 - Change 1 explains how eligible applicants can apply for DWGs, including emergency funding requests. The U.S. Department of Labor accepts applications on a rolling basis, which are then reviewed in the order received.
The approved emergency applications collectively include disaster-relief cleanup and humanitarian assistance activities for those communities the applicants identified as significantly impacted, along with employment and training activities for grant participants. Based on the current availability of federal funds, as well as the anticipated large volume of funding requests from across the nation, the Department approved reduced initial funding amounts to address the critical community needs in areas hardest impacted by the COVID-19 public health emergency. The amount initially provided is the lesser of 33% of the grant amount requested or a set initial award amount correlated to a severity rating. The rating is based on the following data points: COVID-19 cases per 10,000 people (reported daily by the CDC), unemployment insurance initial claims data (reported weekly by the Department), and population data (provided in the July 2019 Census estimate).
Grantees must submit a full budget and implementation plan to the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) within 60 days of the initial award. Additional time and the continued evaluation of the impact of COVID-19 on a project’s proposed service area may lead to further revisions to project size and scope. Should grantees require additional resources beyond the initial award, they may incorporate a request for additional funding in the submission of the full budget and plan. ETA will review their expenditure levels and performance outcomes prior to the recommendation of any additional funding.
Note: Total Award Amount may not represent current obligation of funds.
*Indicates Employment Recovery dislocated worker grant type. Others are disaster recovery grants.