Steve Rogers

About Steve Rogers

Assistant News Director/Assignment Editor; degree in finance and administration from Yale University; 35 years experience in journalism.

Latest Storm Victim Updates from FEMA

Call-outs

We are calling applicants in designated counties after they register with FEMA to assess their housing situation and identify any immediate needs.

If applicants receive a phone call from FEMA representatives and question the validity of the caller, they can contact FEMA’s Helpline by calling 800-621-3362 to verify the source of the call. The FEMA representative will then make another attempt to call the applicant back. FEMA will not call applicants to request any banking information.

Should you receive a call asking for banking information, you should contact the Mississippi Attorney General’s office at 601-359-3680 or visit ago.state.ms.us.

· Read any notification from FEMA carefully. If, when registering with FEMA, you choose to receive updates to your smartphone or other device via SMS/text, you will receive application status updates, sometimes soon after you complete the registration process.

You may receive various messages from FEMA, such as when a determination of eligibility is made, or that any type of request letter has been mailed to you.

If the decision is you are eligible for assistance, you may receive a message stating a payment is scheduled.

If the decision is you are ineligible for assistance, this isn’t necessarily a final decision. FEMA may need further information or documentation from you to further evaluate your application.

· All applicants will receive a letter from FEMA regarding their eligibility. If you receive a FEMA letter stating you are ineligible, it will include an explanation of what steps need to be taken if you disagree with FEMA’s decision or for FEMA to reconsider the decision.

If you have insurance, be sure to file your claim and register with FEMA. FEMA cannot provide assistance which is available from another source, including insurance. You must submit insurance settlement documentation to FEMA because FEMA may be able to assist with losses not covered by insurance.

· If you have questions about any messages or letters you receive from FEMA, visit a disaster recovery center or call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362. Applicants who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability can call TTY 800-462-7585. To locate the nearest disaster recovery center, go to FEMA.gov/DRCLocator or call the FEMA helpline.

Disaster Survivor Assistance teams

We have 9 crews of Disaster Survivor Assistance specialists and FEMA Corps members in all seven of the originally designated counties canvassing neighborhoods.

They are providing on-site registration assistance, addressing immediate and emerging needs, and answering any questions specific to the registration process. Specialists can also provide referrals to additional resources.

Crew members can be identified easily by their photo badges and either FEMA or FEMA Corps clothing. Mississippians are reminded to ask for federal identification before providing personal information.

Recovery numbers

Nearly $3.1 million in FEMA Individual Assistance grants has been approved to help Mississippi disaster survivors recover, including:

Nearly $2.4 million approved for housing grants, including short-term rental assistance and home repair costs.

Nearly $693,000 approved to help cover other essential disaster-related needs such as medical and dental expenses and lost personal possessions.

Nearly 3,100 people have contacted FEMA for help or information regarding disaster assistance.

In addition to FEMA grants for individuals and families, other forms of disaster assistance are provided by the U.S. Small Business Administration and other partner agencies such as the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army. FEMA refers some survivors to those agencies.

All businesses that contact FEMA are also referred to the SBA.

Others may be interested in other programs such as disaster unemployment assistance and disaster legal services.

1,424 home inspections completed.

More than 2,000 visits to disaster recovery centers by people affected by the disaster.

8 disaster recovery centers are now open.