Limited time left to claim Cyclone Olwyn Disaster Recovery

People in the Gascoyne-Pilbara region who experienced a loss of income as a result of Tropical Cyclone Olwyn in March 2015 have just over a week left to claim Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA).

Department of Human Services General Manager Hank Jongen said anyone, including employees, primary producers and sole traders who can demonstrate that the March cyclone was directly responsible for lost income have until Thursday 17 September to lodge a claim for DRA.

“People whose income was affected by Tropical Cyclone Olwyn may be eligible for fortnightly taxable payments for a maximum of 13 weeks under the DRA scheme,” Mr Jongen said.

“To date the department has approved 103 DRA claims to assist individuals whose income suffered as a result of the cyclone.

“The aftermath of a disaster can be hectic and emotionally draining. I’d encourage anyone who may have neglected to test their eligibility for DRA to do so immediately to avoid missing out.”

Remote Servicing Manager Melissa Rennie said department staff were continuing to offer specialist support for those impacted by the cyclone.

“During the recovery effort it became apparent the Carnarvon Service Centre needed a Vietnamese interpreter to assist Vietnamese market gardeners with payment claims and queries,” Ms Rennie said.

“Xuan Hien Le, or Kevin as he prefers to be called, was immediately brought on board to fill the service gap and is available to help those needing to make a last minute claim for DRA.

“Kevin’s ability to fit into the team was outstanding. In fact, he so impressed us that we have now engaged Kevin on a casual basis, which means we can promote other payments and services to the local Vietnamese community.”

To lodge a claim, or for more information, phone the Australian Government Emergency Information line on 180 22 66 or visit humanservices.gov.au/disaster.