LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - The Calcasieu Parish Police Jury’s Human Service Department is launching an Emergency Rental Assistance program to help with housing and rental expenses after receiving 13 million dollars in federal funding for the program.
“The goal of the program is to help residents who were affected by COVID-19, to pay their rent,” Calcasieu Parish Director of Human Services Tarek Pilote said. “So, if they fell behind during the pandemic, this will help to bring them current.”
Assistance is only available to those who have faced hardships as a result of the pandemic.
“This is very important that this is geared towards COVID-19,” Pilote said. “So, anyone who is calling in for assistance, we have to tie the assistance back.”
One or more members of the household must meet certain requirements in order to be eligible.
“First and foremost, an individual must be obligated to pay rent,” Pilote said. “They must have received unemployment benefits or receiving unemployment benefits or had some type of reduction in their household income.”
The department encourages landlords and residents to apply for assistance together. Doing so can help distribute assistance faster.
“In some cases, a landlord may have more than one resident or tenant that may be eligible for this program. And it will help to expedite payments.”
Human Services emphasizes assistance is only available for COVID-19 related difficulties.
Registration starts 8 a.m, March 15, and Residents can apply online or by calling Human Services at 337-721-4033.