The coming of COVID-19 has disrupted our lives in many ways but it has also highlighted the disparities and crises already present in our society. We recover from this pandemic the same way we reckon with the longstanding challenges of inequality in Athens: with political boldness to heal the economic, racial, and social injustices that ail us.
To get us through COVID-19, I will:
- Work with epidemiologists and health experts to make sound public health decisions that protect the safety and wellness of all Athenians
- Pursue policies to protect renters from eviction
- Advocate for workers to be taken care of with financial assistance, job security, and robust unemployment benefits
- Advocate for resources and assistance for local small businesses
- Push for CARES Act funding, and other federal funds, to be allocated to minority-focused organizations and minority-owned businesses
- Work to ensure that families and students have the resources and assistance they need to succeed in this COVID-world
General Information and Resources for the Athens Community
Including updates on statistics, local and federal assistance, and countywide mutual aid efforts
ACC Local Government Updates
Regular updates from the local government on policies and resources.
These include information to understand and access aid from the state and federal government.
Athens Mutual Aid Network
Community-run crowdsourced page with many resources including hotline for relief.
Hotline: 844-423-6886 and press “1” or visit tiny.cc/reliefathens
Financial Aid Resources
For those in need of help or able to donate
Support for Immigrant Families in Crisis (SIFIC)
Managed by Athens Immigrant Rights Coalition
All funds donated to SIFIC go directly and entirely to families in need.
Athens-based organization offering direct financial assistance with rent, utilities, etc.
Give Directly has been doing amazing work for a long time internationally. Now they’re using their proven-effective skills in direct-aid distribution to address the COVID-19 crisis and help those most in need in the United States as well as abroad. If you have stimulus money to share, or any amount to spare now or later, please join me in donating to Give Directly as well as the organizations listed above.
Garrie Vereen Emergency Relief Fund
Managed by Nuçi’s Space.
[Distribution of funds are temporarily suspended.]
Mental Health Resources
These are difficult times for everyone and you are not alone.
If you or anyone you know is struggling, please reach out to these organizations for help.
Georgia Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities
COVID-19 Emotional Support Line: 1-866-399-8938
Georgia Crisis and Access Line (GCAL)
Resource for crisis intervention services by telephone. They can dispatch mobile crisis teams (social workers, not police) who can arrive on site. They generally will be coming from Atlanta, so expect 1-2 hours before arrival. If super-urgent, call 911. This will involve police; you can request their specially trained team by:
- describing the situation as a “mental health emergency” and
- requesting they dispatch a “Crisis Intervention Response Unit.”
240 Mitchell Bridge Road, Athens, GA 30606
They have a 24/7 behavioral health crisis center with 30-bed inpatient unit. Nuçi’s Space
Nuçi’s Space remains open by appointment only and staff is available by phone Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm. Appointments can also be made to meet with counseling advocate Lesley Cobbs by phone or Zoom.