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California Is About To Mail First Batch of Debit Cards To Immigrants Needing Pandemic Relief

Luis Guzman, who lost his job as California went into shutdown, relies on the bus the to get around. As an undocumented worker who will not be recieving any money from the federal stimulus package. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)
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A state program to help immigrants through the pandemic is starting to send out cash aid this week.

The Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, or CHIRLA -- one of a dozen community organizations helping the state process applications -- said it was mailing out the first batch of debit cards on Thursday.

The Disaster Relief Assistance for Immigrants fund was set up for immigrants who don't qualify for unemployment or federal stimulus money because they aren't in the U.S. legally, but are losing jobs just as other workers are.

CHIRLA reports processing more than 3,000 applications from L.A. and Orange counties. The demand has been overwhelming: The organization reports getting two million calls since the program opened Monday, and having to add a phone line to accommodate applicants seeking help.

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