As a result of the anticipated local economic impact of COVID-19, the New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA) is standing up a relief fund to meet the needs of gig economy workers who have been directly impacted via loss of income.
NOLABA is committing $100,000 to initiate the fund, with a goal of increasing the fund assets to a minimum of $500,000. We have issued a charge across the community to encourage business leaders, philanthropy, and concerned New Orleanians to contribute to increase the potential reach and impact of this relief effort. As of April 4, over $500,000 has been raised to provide direct grants to gig economy workers.
As of 2017, gig economy workers represent more than 8% of the workforce in Orleans Parish, including rideshare drivers, musicians, arena workers, and festival production staff. As contract employees of often large corporations, gig economy workers tend to lack access to minimum wage, paid sick leave, overtime pay, and standard employee benefits, making them particularly susceptible to changes within the economy.
In New Orleans, many of our gig-workers depend on the cultural calendar for reliable income. With the cancellations and postponements of many large local events on the horizon, this community stands to lose out on millions of dollars of potential income, directly impacting their livelihoods and family well-being. This relief fund is being set up to ensure that these critical members of our community continue to be active participants in our economy, with an economic outlook they can depend on.
We recognize that this fund will only be part of the solution for most families. NOLABA will be aggressively advocating for resources alongside Mayor LaToya Cantrell and the New Orleans City Council, as the need becomes more evident and the federal government’s response is solidified.
Temporary Relief Fund Size
Eligibility for Multiple Awards
Yes. Applicants can re-apply after 45 days if they remain eligible.
Please note, if you lack any of these sources of documentation, we’re still willing to work with you. Please send us an email, so we can work with you to come up with a solution.
For immediacy, funds will be disbursed via PayPal. Checks are also available, if necessary.
To qualify for a relief grant, you must:
You can apply for a relief grant through this website. Click apply and you’ll be provided with a brief form requesting information about you, your employment history, and your income. Please note you’ll be required to provide copies of:
Please note, we have temporarily suspended applications while we work through the volume received to date.
Yes, if you are approved for an initial grant, you can apply for a second relief grant 45 days after your initial application, assuming you still meet all eligibility criteria.
The grants being awarded are $500.
Yes, all funds held in the Relief Fund will be used to provide grants to eligible members of the gig economy. Donations can be provided via check or online donation. Online transactions are managed by Commit Change, who takes a 3% fee for processing. There is no processing fee associated with check donations.
The NOLABA team is working to disburse funds as quickly as possible. You will receive an email when your application is being actively reviewed and you will receive an additional email when your application has been approved or declined. Should we require any further information, we will follow-up via email.
The response to the Gig Economy Relief Fund has been immense. To date, we have received over 1,600 applications, which our team is rapidly working to review in the order received. We’re temporarily shutting down the acceptance of new applications while we work through this volume.
Our team is using this time to rapidly review all applications received to date. Because of the variable nature of grant review, there isn’t a set date for when applications will re-open. As we work through the existing pool of applicants, we will assess the status of the overall fund and make a determination regarding future phases of our relief efforts.
If your application was received on or prior to April 15, 2020, it is included in the formal review process. You will receive an email from NOLABA when your application is being actively reviewed. You will receive a follow-up email when your application has been approved or declined. Should we require any additional insight or information during the review process, we will reach out to you directly. There is no need to call or email to check on the status of your application.