Staff Senate Employee Emergency Assistance Fund

The purpose of the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Fund is to assist UWF permanent employees (Staff and Faculty) who request financial assistance due to circumstances resulting from an emergency.

Guidelines and Information

INTRODUCTION  TYPES OF ASSISTANCE EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE FUND
ELIGILBILITY APPLICATION FOR ASSISTANCE DETERMINATION OF NEED
PROCEDURES CATEGORIES OF NEED REPAYMENT AND DONATION

 

INTRODUCTION

This document is designed to serve as a guide to those individuals who wish to explore the availability of emergency assistance from the Staff Senate. It also serves as the source for the guidelines to be followed by the Emergency Assistance Committee (hereafter referred to as EAC) in carrying out its responsibilities.

TYPES OF ASSISTANCE

In general, the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Fund is designed to provide financial assistance and/or services for emergency situations. The program provides assistance through direct financial aid from the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Fund as well as referrals to Human Resources for further assistance.

EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE FUND

All eligible permanent UWF Staff and Faculty may be granted discretional financial assistance from the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Fund. This fund originates from employee contributions, donations, and various fund raising campaigns organized by the Staff Senate. Because of the limited sources of income for this fund, a grant of up to $500.00 may be allowed for each emergency situation. The actual amount of the financial assistance grant is determined by the Staff Senate EAC and is based on an analysis of need, as described in the " DETERMINATION OF NEED" section of this manual.

ELIGIBILITY

Financial assistance from the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Program is limited to permanent UWF Staff and Faculty.
Assistance is limited to one award per employee per 18-month period and to no more than $2,000 per eligible employee during any 10-year period. Exceptions may be granted to any of the above requirements with a majority approval by both the Staff Senate EAC and the Staff Senate Executive Board.

APPLICATION FOR ASSISTANCE

Please complete the application form, and send the completed form to staffsenate@uwf.edu. The Application Form may be obtained online, or from the Staff Senate President, or it may be printed from the Staff Senate's web site at Staff Senate Employee Emergency Assistance Fund Application. In the event an eligible employee cannot personally seek an application, forms may be obtained by a designated representative; e.g. spouse, child, friend of the family, or co-worker with prior notification and approval of the beneficiary. An applicant may also request that the Staff Senate President send the application via USPS. 

Only COMPLETE applications will be considered by the EAC.

DETERMINATION OF NEED

"Need" exists when a UWF permanent employee (Staff or Faculty) lacks resources to purchase the basic necessities of life or meet the contingencies created by an emergency situation.
Verification of the emergency is necessary to determine need. Documentation or copies of the invoices or bills that are to be considered for payment should also be submitted with the application.

PROCEDURES

In order to determine whether the problem presented is within the scope of the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Program, the following questions will be considered by the Committee:

Is the applicant eligible for these services?
Has the “Category of Need” been established?
Can the problem be better handled by Human Resources?
The EAC Chairperson, or designee, will conduct a preliminary investigation to verify eligibility that best accommodates the situation. Financial assistance will require completion of a household financial analysis to determine the financial need. The financial analysis form is included in the application packet available online or obtained from the Staff Senate President.
Below are the steps for the application process:
An application for assistance is submitted and a case number is assigned. To ensure confidentiality, only the case number will be used in all transactions concerning the application.
The EAC Chairperson, or designee, will present the request to the committee for evaluation and appropriate action. At all possible times the committee will meet as a group.
EAC Chairperson notifies applicant of the committee’s decision.
Decisions of the EAC may be appealed to the Staff Senate Executive Board. Decisions of the Staff Senate Executive Board are final.

CATEGORIES OF NEED

The following examples are types of emergencies or destitute situations which the EAC will consider. Each application will be considered on an individual basis. Upon report of such an emergency, the EAC will direct the individual to HR for additional services.

 Acceptable

  • Lost or Stolen Funds - Assistance may be requested because of lost or stolen funds. Such assistance shall be limited to the actual need (up to $500). A copy of a police report must be furnished to the Committee.
  • Following a Disaster - If the eligible employee has immediate need due to devastating circumstances as a result of a disaster (excludes weather related occurrences). Financial assistance (up to $500) shall be granted as soon as possible to alleviate immediate expenses.
  • Medical/Dental Care - Upon recommendation by the EAC, financial assistance up to $500 may be allocated to an eligible employee as a result of extended illness, medical bills and care, or incidental expenses resulting from an illness or emergency situation once sick leave and/or annual leave is exhausted.
  • If the requested emergency assistance is within the guidelines, MEDICAL INSURANCE PREMIUMS will be considered once sick leave and/or annual leave is exhausted and employee is on unpaid status.
  • Death in the Immediate Family - Assistance (up to $500) may be provided to relieve an eligible employee of immediate financial concerns. Immediate family is defined as spouse, children, parents and grandparents.
  • Miscellaneous - If the requested emergency assistance is within the guidelines, basic utilities (electricity, gas, and water/sewer) will be considered for payment.
  • Payment - Payment will be made directly to the vendor, company or organization designated by the eligible employee.

Not Acceptable

The EAC will consider each case individually; however, the following are examples of circumstances or events that will not be considered emergencies:

  • Finance a leave of absence or vacation
  • Moving expenses
  • Finance a marriage, divorce, child support, or adoptions
  • Pay income taxes or related penalties and interest
  • Debt consolidation/Attorney fees
  • Loans, bankruptcy (foreclosures)
  • Telephone (to include cellphone or internet service)
  • Cable television
  • Payment of creditors (credit cards, or non-sufficient funds (NSF))

REPAYMENT AND DONATION

The Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Fund has no requirements for the repayment of financial grants. Repayment is encouraged and welcomed once the recipient's crisis has passed and financial stability has been achieved. Repayment aids the Staff Senate Emergency Assistance Fund in assisting others. Repayments or donations may be made through payroll deduction or direct gifts to the fund through the Staff Senate. In addition to payroll deduction gifts, there are fund raising activities held throughout the year, usually at the annual UWF Employees Spring Picnic.

Pay Roll Deduction Form (PDF)

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