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Bill due dates bring extra concern as coronavirus disrupts incomes

Posted at 10:35 PM, Apr 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-01 23:35:34-04

Shelter in place orders have closed many businesses, leaving thousands unemployed in Central Texas.

As we start a new month, it's time to pay bills. For many without a job, the stress of it all is starting to set in.

"Right now I'm out of a job. I'm gonna try and get unemployment going cause I still have bills and everything. My brother sent me a little money. My mother sent me a little money to pay some of my bills. I still got three or four more bills to pay," said Frelson Pryor who recently lost his job.

Even local restaurants like True Jamaica in East Waco are feeling the pressure as some employees have no choice but to stay at home.

"There's struggles there where staff can't work, not because they don't want to, but because they can't cause they have kids at home and cant pay for daycare," said True Jamaica owner Aniceto Charles.

The U.S. Department of Labor announced a record 3.28 million unemployment claims were filed in the U.S. between March 15th and March 21st.

But help is on the way as the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development suspended all foreclosures and evictions for single family homeowners with FHA insured mortgages through the end of April.

"This is not anything that we could've planned for. I think even the most well prepared will be feeling this," said Waco Mayor Pro Tem Andrea Barefield

She says the city is ready to help people who may be in a crunch.

"We're wanting to make sure that now, especially, business owners, employees, folks with families, if there are resources out there available to you, that you get them." said Barefield.

Waco city staff has divided into task forces to find help for people that need financial help, social services, healthcare and more.
The goal is to more quickly connect people in need with industry leaders who can best aid in these times.

"So we need you to help us help each other. That's what Wacoans do. Waco supports Waco and we need to wrap our arms around each other from a safe social distance and do the things that we do to try to get to the end," said Barefield.

If you lost your job and are in desperate need of money, you should apply for unemployment. You can also call the Economic Opportunities Advancement Corporation.

Also just in case, contact your service provider as soon as possible and explain your situation if you can't pay your bills.