Published: August 19, 2020

The last few months have been hard for all Oregonians and union members, but it has been especially difficult for those dealing with layoffs as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. Thousands of us have been left without work as businesses and services shut down, and the budget shortfall from the crisis has only exacerbated these issues. That is why we have fought to get some relief for our out of work employees, and the state has listened!

Now, the more than 70,000 laid off Oregonians are going to be eligible for $500 “relief checks” to help stabilize our finances. This is a $35 million dollar program that has a “first come, first served” approach to providing these options to those out of work.


Here is how you can apply to get your relief check:

  1. Those who are Oregon residents and who were making less than $48,000 a year before the Coronavirus hit are eligible to receive these payments.
  2. If you have already applied for unemployment benefits, you are only eligible for the relief check if the state is behind on processing your claim. If you have not applied for unemployment benefits and meet the financial cap, then you are eligible for these payments.
  3. You can find the application you need to fill out here, and this will also show you the locations that you can take the application to for processing.
  4. The recipient will have to pick up their check at a bank or credit union, and there are at least 150 locations statewide that qualify.
  5. Applicants are required to follow Coronavirus safety measures, such as wearing a mask, when submitting their application in person or picking up their checks.

Click here to get your application for your relief check!

This money is a grant and not a loan, which means you don’t have to pay it back, and was made available through the emergency funds granted to the state by Congress earlier in the year. We know that this amount of money is not enough to sustain a household, which is why we are fighting hard to see more emergency funding to our state, to make sure the Employment Department is fully staffed and operating efficiently, and to push back against staffing cuts at agencies and organizations across Oregon. Our union is the strongest voice we have to ensure that we can stay financially stable during this difficult