Struggling with the government shutdown? Calling 2-1-1 can help

Struggling with the government shutdown? Calling 2-1-1 can help

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Aloha United Way is helping those affected by the government shutdown find help from a wide variety of resources, and all it takes is a phone call.

The Aloha United Way’s “211″ is a system that refers furloughed or unpaid employees with information about financial relief and support from companies that can help provide food assistance and unemployment benefits.

The reason it’s called 211? That’s all you have to do — pull out your phone and dial 2-1-1.

Thursday marks the 34th day of the federal government shutdown. With no resolution in sight, federal employees in Hawaii are already guaranteed to miss their second paycheck on Friday.

In a news conference on Thursday, the Aloha United Way Chief Operating Officer Norm Baker expressed an urgency to federal workers to find assistance sooner rather than later.

“What we would like to do is encourage anybody out there who is having difficulties because of the federal shutdown to call 211,” he said. “Talk to one of our operators and learn what services are available for them in the community.”

The top two requests from the 211 service include access to food pantries and rent payment insurance, according to an AUW news release.

The 2-1-1 number is available from Monday through Friday between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. The service is toll-free, statewide and available in 150 languages.

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