COVID-19: Need Help or Want to Help?
On March 27, California issued a statewide moratorium on residential evictions for renters who cannot pay their rent because of COVID-19 related economic hardships. The moratorium is valid through May 31, 2020. Learn more and read the order in full on the Governor’s website.
Additionally, Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, US Bank, Wells Fargo, and nearly 200 state-chartered banks, credit unions, and servicers have committed to providing relief for consumers and homeowners in California. Learn more about financial help from the State of California.
The California Employment Development Department may be able to assist those who are either unable to work or experiencing reduced work hours due to related COVID-19 issues. Visit their COVID-19 page for information on Disability Insurance, Unemployment Insurance, and additional benefits.
Federal Taxes: Tax Day has been postponed until July 15, 2020. Learn more at https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/.
On March 30, Governor Newsom announced a 90-day sales tax deadline extension for small businesses, plus licensing and fee deadline extensions for small businesses. Learn more here.
The Senate’s Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee released a guide to the CARES Act for Small Businesses. You can find it here (PDF).
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce released a "Small Business Guide and Checklist" (PDF) to help small businesses and self-employed individuals prepare to file for a loan under the CARES Act.
Los Angeles County: COVID 19: Information for Businesses: This page contains L.A. County-specific information on how businesses can obtain assistance during this health emergency.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to California small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. Visit disasterloan.sba.gov/ela, call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955, or e-mail email@example.com for more information on SBA disaster assistance. TTY: 800-877-8339. Learn more at SBA.gov/coronavirus.
The L.A. County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs’ Office of Small Business can also help connect you to local, state and federal resources, including layoff aversion and emergency loans. Visit dcba.lacounty.gov for more information, or to speak to a small business counselor, call 800-593-8222 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Food and Essentials
The Community Services Department is now offering weekly grocery delivery for low-income seniors in Signal Hill through the Brown Bag Distribution Program. Visit Brown Bag Food Distribution Program to apply.
The CalFresh Program is available to all low-income Californians. The program issues monthly benefits on an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card. Food may be purchased at any grocery store or farmers market that accepts EBT cards. You can apply at getcalfresh.org or call 866-613-3777.
The Long Beach Unified School District is serving meals to students at a limited number of schools, including at Signal Hill Elementary, while schools are closed. Meals are provided Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. These meals are free to students regardless of which school they attend. No paperwork is required. Children must be present for meals to be provided. Learn more about Free Meals to Go (PDF).
Many grocery stores are changing hours to allow staff to re-stock and sanitize. Some stores are also offering special hours for seniors only. For your convenience, we have a list of local stores, and their hours, location, and contact information: Grocery Store Hours (PDF)
Many Signal Hill restaurants are open, offering delivery, take-out and drive-thru service. We’ve compiled a list of local restaurants, the services they’re offering, their hours, and contact information. Visit cityofsignalhill.org/restaurants.
The Long Beach Unified School District is serving meals to children up to age 18 at various schools throughout the area while schools are closed. Learn more from LBUSD here.
Utilities and Bill Payments
The City of Signal Hill is suspending all water shut-offs due to non-payment through April 30.
Long Beach Energy Resources will provide restoration of gas service to customers currently shut-off for non payment. For more information, visit: longbeach.gov/energyresources.
Southern California Edison is temporarily suspending service disconnections for customers unable to pay their bill, and waiving late fees, for residential and business customers affected by COVID-19. If you have difficulty paying your SCE bill due to COVID-19, please call 800-950-2356 and/or visit https://www.sce.com/safety/coronavirus to learn more.
Telephone, Cell Phone and Internet: The FCC has reached an agreement with several major service providers, including Frontier, Spectrum/Charter, TracFone Wireless, Sprint, AT&T, Verizon, and others under the Keep Americans Connected Pledge. These providers agree that through April 13, they will not terminate any services to residential or small business customers who can’t pay their bills due to complications from the pandemic, as well as waive any late fees those customers might incur because of economic hardships resulting from COVID-19. Please consult your individual service provider for information.
On March 25, Governor Newsom announced that several major banks and financial institutions have agreed to delay foreclosures and provide mortgage relief to California homeowners who are struggling to make their monthly payments due to COVID-19. Learn more about this mortgage financial relief on Governor Newsom’s website. If you’re struggling to pay your mortgage if COVID-19 has resulted in job loss, income reduction, etc., contact your mortgage servicer to request mortgage assistance.
Loans by Fannie Mae may be eligible for a forbearance plan to reduce or suspend mortgage payments for up to 12 months. Learn more: https://www.knowyouroptions.com/covid19assistance
Loans by Freddie Mac may be eligible for a forbearance plan to reduce or suspend mortgage payments for up to 12 months. Learn more: http://www.freddiemac.com/about/covid-19.html
Homeowners with mortgages insured by the Federal Housing Administration may be eligible for a forbearance plan to reduce or suspend mortgage payments for up to 12 months. Contact your loan servicer for details. The federal government has also suspended evictions and foreclosures for FHA-insured properties through at least May 18.
Student Loan Borrowers
Federal student loan borrowers can be placed in an administrative forbearance, which allows you to temporarily stop making your monthly loan payment. Please note that interest does accrue during a forbearance. Visit https://studentaid.gov/announcements-events/coronavirus to learn more, and contact your loan servicer to find out your specific options.
Mental Health Resources
Managing the stress and anxiety associated with COVID-19 and staying at home may be overwhelming for some people. It can help to keep a healthy routine that includes regular sleep, a healthy diet, exercise, and increased communication/connection with friends and loved ones. People with pre-existing mental health conditions should continue with their treatment and be aware of new or worsening symptoms.
- CDC: Manage Anxiety and Stress
- L.A. County DPH: Coping with Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks (PDF)
- Taking Care of Your Emotional Health In an Emergency
Please reach out to the following resources if you or someone you know struggles with stress, depression, anxiety, and coping.
- Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health Hotline: 800-854-7771
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s Disaster Distress Helpline: 800-985-5990 or text TalkWithUs to 66746. (TTY: 800-846-8517)
For many domestic violence victims and survivors, staying home may not be the safest option. Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 800-799-7233 and TTY 800-787-3224. If you are unable to call safely, visit thehotline.org to chat with someone online, or text LOVEIS to 22522. TheHotline.org also has specific information for domestic violence survivors on staying safe during COVID-19.
How Can I Help Others Right Now?
The Signal Hill Community Foundation is seeking donations to its Signal Hill COVID-19 Relief Fund that will support community-based organizations at the frontlines of the coronavirus response in Signal Hill. Donations will support approved 501(C)3 nonprofit, educational, volunteer and governmental organizations working on these efforts. Learn more: https://signalhillcommunityfoundation.org/covid-19
The United Way of Greater Los Angeles created the Pandemic Relief Fund to support L.A. County’s most vulnerable residents during the COVID-19 outbreak. The fund aims to support public health efforts to protect the homeless, prevent an increase in homelessness, and provide support to low-income students and their families who need technology assistance to continue their academics. Learn more: unitedwayla.org
California is asking all health care providers who may not be in the workforce right now to step up and join its California Health Corps. If you’re a retired provider, a nursing or medical student, a dentist, a mental health care provider, or other kind of health provider, you have the opportunity to play a critical role in responding to this urgent situation. You will be paid and will be given malpractice insurance coverage. Learn more and sign up at healthcorps.ca.gov.
Reach out to a friend or neighbor and offer your help, if you are healthy and able. At-risk (over 60 years old and/or experiencing a chronic health condition) individuals are advised not to leave their homes at all right now, therefore a friend or loved one should help them with essential supplies, food, etc. Appropriate ways to reach out include calling, texting, using social media, or simply leaving a note in their mailbox or door. Make sure you practice physical distancing while interacting with others.
If you are a vendor interested in providing supplies and PPEs to Los Angeles County’s Emergency Operations, visit https://doingbusiness.lacounty.gov/
Resources for Parents and Children
Keep kids healthy while school is closed and help to manage their stress during these difficult times.
Parents, family members, school staff, and other trusted adults can play an important role in helping children make sense of what they hear in a way that is honest, accurate, and minimizes anxiety or fear. CDC has created guidance to help adults have conversations with children about COVID-19 and ways they can avoid getting and spreading the disease: Talking with Children About COVID-19
Keep kids healthy while school is out, and protect kids from getting sick: CDC: Children and COVID-19
The Signal Hill Public Library has a variety of online resources (PDF) for kids and adults during its closure.
Long Beach Unified School District is offering home learning opportunities at https://www.lbschools.net/HLO