Restaurant workers can now apply for a new COVID-19 relief fund grant

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Restaurant workers in Illinois can now apply for a $500 one-time grant.

It’s through a COVID-19 Relief Fund from the Illinois Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.

Applications for the grant launched Monday.

Applications are open to workers laid off for three or more weeks. It also applies to people who have been or have had family members diagnosed with COVID-19.

“I think it’s been a tremendous blow to the hospitality industry. Between August of 2019 and August of 2020 we have over 8,000 less jobs in the leisure and hospitality industry, most of those are likely restaurant employees,” said Chris Setti, the CEO of the Greater Peoria Economic Development Council.

Setti says the money could help those working in an industry that’s facing challenges.

“People still have bills to pay just because you’re out of work doesn’t mean the bills stop coming, whether that’s the utility bills or rent or college debt or just feeding your family,” said Setti.

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