Can noncitizens get FEMA assistance after Hurricane Ian? Yes, under these conditions

Omar Rodríguez Ortiz, Miami Herald on

Published in Weather News

A week after Hurricane Ian ravaged entire communities across Southwest Florida, people of all backgrounds are trying to put their lives back together by throwing away water-damaged furniture, removing mold-infested walls and finding a place to get a hot shower for the first time in a while.

But even though many are displaced, not everyone is facing the same challenges. Some lost loved ones, others no longer have a place to live, and quite a few desperately need help to get back on their feet.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency said earlier this week that it’s “committed to helping all eligible disaster survivors recover from Hurricane Ian” — including noncitizen nationals and “qualified aliens.”

Disaster survivors in Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Flagler, Hardee, Highlands, Hillsborough, Lake, Lee, Manatee, Orange, Osceola, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, St. Johns, Sarasota, Seminole and Volusia counties may apply for FEMA subsidies.

You or a member of your household must be a U.S. citizen, noncitizen national or a “qualified alien” in order to get help from FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program, the agency said Tuesday. IHP provides financial and direct services to eligible people and households whose insurance will not cover all “necessary expenses and serious needs.”

Here’s who can apply.


Who is a ‘qualified alien’?

A “qualified alien” includes:

▪ A legal permanent resident (“green card” holder).

▪ An asylee, refugee or an undocumented immigrant whose deportation is being withheld.


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