U.S. Department of Labor Announces Assistance For Hurricane Florence Recovery
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor today announced actions it is taking to assist Americans in states affected by Hurricane Florence.
"The Department of Labor is actively engaged in Administration-wide efforts to help those impacted by Hurricane Florence's devastation," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta. "As Americans come together to help each other recover from this hurricane, the Department of Labor is committed to supporting the American worker."
U.S. Department of Labor actions taken in response to Hurricane Florence include the following:
- The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) is prepared to provide Disaster Dislocated Worker Grants to help affected states assess workforce needs. The disbursement of funds will be determined as needs are assessed by state and local partners.
- ETA is assisting in administering Disaster Unemployment Assistance.
- The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) is coordinating with other federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Treasury, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, on the release of compliance guidance for employee benefit plans, and plan participants and beneficiaries, in the wake of Hurricane Florence.
- The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) is temporarily suspending select federal contractor requirements, allowing businesses involved in hurricane relief the ability to prioritize recovery efforts.
- The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is responding to Hurricane Florence's impact on mines, and stands ready to respond more generally with specialized equipment and personnel.
- The Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) is working with its grantees to identify flexibility and additional funding needs for its programs. VETS staff is prepared to offer assistance to employers, members of the National Guard and Reserves, and members of the National Disaster Medical System and Urban Search and Rescue service who may be deployed in support of rescue and recovery operations.
- The Wage and Hour Division (WHD) will be prioritizing all calls in the affected areas to continue to provide uninterrupted service to workers and employers.
- The Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) has issued a special enforcement advisory that temporarily eases reporting and other regulatory burdens on labor organizations, labor relations consultants, and employers affected by Hurricane Florence.
- The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is actively engaged with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Administration, Environmental Protection Agency, and other federal agencies, and is prepared to provide assistance. North Carolina and South Carolina have state-controlled worker safety and health programs; OSHA stands ready to assist affected states upon request.
- Public Service Announcements – in English and Spanish – have been prepared for broadcast emphasizing the need to work safely in affected areas during recovery efforts. Other hurricane recovery safety materials are available at OSHA.gov.
The Department will continue to monitor developments regarding Hurricane Florence and take additional actions as necessary. For the latest updates, please visit the Department's Severe Storm and Flood Recovery Assistance webpage.