Disaster payments available for NSW flood-impacted residents

Australian Government disaster payments will roll out from tomorrow to eligible residents in 23 local government areas (LGAs) affected by the severe storms and flooding that continue to impact large areas of Metropolitan Sydney and east coast of New South Wales.

The assistance will be available in the local government areas of Blacktown, Blue Mountains, Camden, Canterbury Bankstown, Campbelltown, Central Coast, Cessnock, Fairfield, Georges River, Hawkesbury, Hornsby, Kiama, Lithgow, Liverpool, Northern Beaches, Penrith, Shellharbour, Shoalhaven, Sutherland, The Hills, Wingecarribee, Wollondilly and Wollongong.

The one-off, non-means tested Australian Government Disaster Recovery Payment of $1000 per eligible adult and $400 per eligible child is available to people who live in those LGAs and who have suffered a significant loss as a result of the floods, including a severely damaged or destroyed home or a serious injury.

The Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA) has also been made available to assist employees and sole traders who experience a loss of income as a direct result of a major disaster and is payable for a maximum of 13 weeks. DRA is taxable.

Equivalent financial assistance will also be available to eligible New Zealand citizens (‘non-protected’ Special Category Visas, subclass 444 holders) affected by the floods.

Quotes attributable to the Prime Minister, the Hon Anthony Albanese MP:

“It’s heartbreaking to think that for many people this is the third or fourth time in 18 months that their lives have been disrupted by a natural disaster of this magnitude.

“Over the last few years our resilience has been tested time and time again, and many people are doing it tough.

“I want everyone in a flood affected region to know that the Commonwealth stands ready and committed to provide support now and through the recovery.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Management, Senator the Hon Murray Watt:

“The Australian Government is committed to making financial help available as swiftly as possible.

“We know natural disasters are distressing for those impacted, both emotionally and financially, and we are doing everything we can to get help where it’s needed fast.

Quotes attributable to Acting Minister for Government Services Amanda Rishworth:

“Services Australia’s priority is helping people access essential disaster assistance.”

“These are the toughest of times for people and we want to help communities get back on their feet.

“People impacted can check their eligibility for AGDRP and DRA on the Services Australia website, before lodging a claim for assistance.

“The easiest way to claim is online through my.gov.au. Online claiming is available 24x7. Claims can be submitted from 2pm Thursday.

“If people need additional support to claim, they can call the Australian Government Emergency Information Line on 180 22 66 from 2 pm Thursday.”