• Hurricane Irma: DCF to pick new location for food assistance sign up in Marion County

    By: Myrt Price


    MARION COUNTY, Fla. - Hundreds of Marion County residents trying to recover after losing their power and the food in their fridge during Hurricane Irma were turned away Monday from an event meant to give them some relief.

    Many said they didn’t get word from the Department of Children and Families that the event was canceled.

    Officials said the Marion County Sheriff's Office Jail Visitation Center’s Food for Florida Disaster Food Assistance site was canceled due to safety concerns.

    Hurricane Irma relief: Thousands apply for food assistance in Brevard, Osceola 

    Signs were posted around the center about the cancellation.

    Other Florida counties with the benefit sign-ups had major traffic backups and lines that lasted for hours.

    LINK: Times and locations fore sign ups 

    The program helps residents who don’t qualify for food stamps, but whose homes were damaged by the storm or had food that spoiled due to power outages.

    Marion County resident Kathryn Farr is on a fixed income and said she was without power for four days following the storm.

    Hurricane Irma: Large crowds gather in Brevard, Osceola for food assistance

    She said she lost all her food.

    “It was early in the month, so I had just gone shopping. It was maybe about $100,” she said.

    DCF said it hopes to have another event within the next few weeks but at a different venue that can handle the number of people expected to show up.

    Those interested in applying for benefits are asked to pre-register online and to bring proof of residency. Applicants who have savings could be denied assistance.

    Residents in 48 counties that were declared disaster zones after the storm could qualify for benefits. Click here to apply for assistance.

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