Flood Victims Looking for Help Find Long Lines

About 17,000 people in Cook County have so far applied for $2.3 million on assistance, officials said

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Thousands wait in long lines in the Englewood neighborhood for federal food assistance related to April storms. Mary Ann Ahern reports. (Published Thursday, Jun 20, 2013)

    Flood victims who've tried to get food assistance this week have been met with long, frustrating lines.

    At an office in Chicago's Englewood neighborhood on Thursday, the line stretched down Western Avenue. Some in line said they'd been there since 11 p.m. Wednesday.

    "I bet we have serviced here maybe about, in the last four days, close to maybe 2,000 customers," said Felicia Ghoston with the Illinois Department of Human Services, which coordinated the food phase of the flood help.

    The mid-April rains impacted 33 counties throughout the state. Those interested in applying for food assistance must do so in person and have only two more days -- Friday and Monday -- to do so.

    Those who do qualify for the food assistance program will receive the help within five days.

    To be eligible for the food benefits, individuals must live in specific impacted ZIP codes, have had damage to their home or business, paid disaster-related expenses that were not reimbursed, and have had a loss or reduction of income as a result of floods between April 16, 2013 and May 15, 2013.

    About 17,000 people in Cook County have so far applied for $2.3 million on assistance, officials said.