For Employees Impacted by COVID-19


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UPDATE: 6/26 - City announces next phase of reopening to begin on June 29 - TEMPORARILY PAUSED

NEW PROGRAM: 5/27 - City announces new Right to Recover program to help low-income wage-earners who contract COVID-19

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We're glad you found us - helping SF workers impacted by COVID-19 is our top priority. Read below to learn about city, state and federal resources. This page is updated daily.

We're here to help. Questions? Suggestions?

Call our Worker Information Line at 415-701-4817

Email us at

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Available 7 days a week 8 AM to 6 PM

Click here for non-government resources

How can the City support you as we recover?
Take the Survey and Learn More



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How to work safely

As more people return to work, it is more important than ever to take precautions to protect your health and the health of the community. Anyone who works outside the home should check their health before every shift, and follow these health and safety tips at work to prevent COVID-19. You can also view tips and guidance by sector: Food and Restaurant Workers, Homecare Providers, Nightlife.

With or without symptoms, anyone who works can get free testing for COVID-19. No doctor's note is required.


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Unemployment Insurance (State)

If you were laid off or had your work hours reduced due to COVID-19, you can file an Unemployment Insurance (UI) claim with the California Employment Development Division (EDD). Note: For anyone receiving Unemployment Insurance payments during March 14 - May 9, 2020, EDD has temporarily suspended the requirement to certify eligibility. You are still required to notify EDD immediately if you return to work during this period.

How much can I collect in benefits with an Unemployment Insurance (UI) claim? Your benefits can range from $40 to $450 per week and from 13 to 26 weeks. Use the Unemployment Insurance Calculator to help estimate your potential weekly benefit amount. New federal action (CARES Act) extends benefits up to an additional 13 weeks, and increases the amount of benefits available by an additional $600 per week through July 31, 2020.

How long will it take to receive the benefits? If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim. The State has waived the one-week unpaid waiting period.

What if I exhausted my unemployment insurance or am ineligible (e.g. independent contractors)? You can file for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA).

What if I refuse to go back to work for reasons related to COVID-19? There are valid reasons to refuse to go back to work, learn more here.

COVID-19 related reasons include:  

Your hours were reduced

You were separated from your employer

You are subject to quarantine

Your children's school is closed and you must stay home to provide child care


For information on how to file a claim, go
. We strongly recommend you apply online. Note: if you have not applied for unemployment benefits before, you will need to register. Due to the high volume of applications, EDD may be experiencing longer than usual wait times - don't give up!

Need Help?
You can reach EDD weekdays from 8 AM until noon at 800-300-5616. EDD has also launched a new call center that is staffed 7 days a week, from 8 AM until 8 PM at 833-978-2511.

To hear directly from EDD about how to file for unemployment benefits, learn about health benefits, and find out how to access other resources, check out our free virtual info sessions every Tuesday and Thursday. Register here.

To get help completing an application for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, call 415-484-8372 or fill out this help request form.


Employers Hiring Now

We connect job seekers with opportunities in growing industries, providing job training and job search assistance at job centers throughout the City. Email us to get started. Our weekly newsletter provides some of the latest job openings in SF. Sign up here and select "Workforce: Hiring Events & Job Opportunities" and check out the most recent job postings here

Looking for locally available jobs and resources? Check out Onward CA, a partnership between the Governor and private firms to match displaced workers with: (1) jobs, (2) life-essential services, and (3) money, food, shelter.

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Right to Recover Program (City) * COMING SOON *

The Right to Recover Program will guarantee two weeks of unpaid wages to any worker who tests positive for COVID-19 and does not have access to worker benefits programs. In addition to replacement wages, those who qualify may be eligible for free hotel rooms where they can quarantine, as well as food delivery and other essentials.


Give2SF This program is funded by generous donations to the Give2SF COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, a public-private partnership. Contribute here.


Paid Sick Leave (City)

San Francisco’s Paid Sick Leave Ordinance requires employers to provide paid sick leave to all employees who perform work in San Francisco including temporary and part-time employees, as highlighted by the San Francisco Office of Labor Standards Enforcement.

How much can I collect? You will be paid at your normal rate. Employees earn 1 hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Employers with 10 or more employees may cap an employee's sick time balance at 72 hours. Employers with fewer than 10 employees may cap an employee's sick time balance at 40 hours. New federal action (CARES Act) increases the amount of paid sick leave by up to 80 hours at 100% of your regular pay, up to $511 per day, starting April 1, 2020.

How long will it take to receive the benefits? Paid sick leave is provided by your employer and will be issued on your normal paycheck.


You may be eligible if you miss work due to:

Quarantine/isolation order

Health-care provider guidance to self-quarantine

Seeking diagnosis for symptoms of COVID-19

Talk to your employer about Paid Sick Leave. If you are a provider of In-Home Support Services (IHSS) or Waiver Personal Care Services (WPCS), see if you're eligible to claim COVID-19 Sick Leave by filling out this form.

Questions? Visit the Office of Labor Standards and Enforcement's guidance on COVID-19. Call 415-554-6271 or email


Additional Support * FUND LIMIT REACHED *

The City will contribute up to 40 hours of additional paid sick leave time extended to employees beyond existing policies through the Workers and Families First Program. This new program will provide financial assistance to businesses and nonprofits to cover their employee’s paid sick leave.

For more details, have your employer read our FAQs and our step-by-step program guide, or call us at 415-554-6134​. As of April 5, 2020, this program is closed and we will begin processing reimbursements April 6. All businesses that apply going forward will be placed on a waitlist and contacted if funds become available. Ask your employer to apply for the waitlist.


Disability Insurance (State)

​If you're unable to work due to medical quarantine or illness related to COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional), you may be eligible for State Disability Insurance.

How much can I collect? Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages and range from $50-$1,300 a week. Disability benefits are paid through the date your doctor certifies or when you exhaust your available benefits, whichever comes first within a 52-week period.
You can use the Disability Insurance Calculator to help estimate your potential benefit amount.

How long will it take to receive the benefits? The State waived the one-week unpaid waiting period so you can collect DI benefits for the first week you are out of work. If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.


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Workers’ Compensation (State) 

If you are unable to do your usual job because you contracted COVID-19 during the regular course of work, you may be eligible for temporary disability payments. Existing California law requires the payment of workers' compensation benefits to injured workers regardless of their immigration status.

How much can I collect? Benefit amounts are generally two-thirds of the gross wages you lose while you are recovering, up to a maximum weekly amount for up to 104 weeks. Benefits stop when you return to work or upon notice from your doctor. You may also be entitled to medical treatment and additional payments.

How long will it take to receive the benefits? If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.


You contracted COVID-19 during the regular course of your work
Immigration status does not affect eligibility

File a claim. You may also apply for State Disability Insurance (see programs above).


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Paid Family Leave (State) 

If you’re unable to work because you are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19, or a child home from school due to COVID-19 closure, you may qualify for Paid Family Leave. Learn more at the Employment Development Department COVID-19 home page.


How much can I collect? Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50 - $1,300 a week. You can receive benefit payments for up to six weeks. Use the Paid Family Leave Calculator to estimate your potential benefit amount. New federal action (CARES Act) extends benefit payments for up to 10 additional weeks (up to $200 per day) from April 1 to December 31, 2020.

How long will it take to receive the benefits? If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.

You're unable to work or telework due to:
Needing to care for a child because their school or child care is closed due to COVID-19
If you have a full or partial loss of wages, check if you're eligible


File a Paid Family Leave (PFL) claim. You may also apply for state unemployment benefits and Paid Sick Leave (see programs above).


Child Care

Free emergency child care is available to first responders, healthcare workers, activated disaster service workers, and all essential public sector employees who are working in San Francisco, and is not limited to San Francisco residents. Care is available at all 35 Recreation and Park Department sites from 6:30 AM to 7:30 PM. If you need emergency childcare learn more and get connected here.

In addition, private-sector essential workers can learn more about available childcare services here.



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What if I exhausted my unemployment insurance or I'm self-employed, a sole proprietor, or an independent contractor?

New federal action (CARES Act) expands eligibility through special Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) to include the self-employed, independent contractors, and people whose benefits have already run out. These benefits cover people whose jobs were impacted from January 27, 2020 to December 31, 2020, and unlike traditional UI benefits, can be claimed from the date you lost employment (not only the date you filed). Starting April 28, 2020 you can submit a PUA claim via EDD's Benefits Program Online portal.


What if I am self-employed and sick, or caring for a sick family member?

If you are self-employed and unable to work or have had your hours reduced due to COVID-19 or are sick or caring for a sick family member, you may be eligible for Disability Insurance (DI), Paid Family Leave (PFL) benefits under a few different scenarios. You may be eligible if you changed jobs over the past 5 to 18 months, you or your past employer may have made contributions on your behalf, or you contributed to UI or DI Elective Coverage.


You can file a claim to determine your eligibility. Submit online for unemployment and for disability or paid family leave.


Note: You may also be eligible for the Sick Leave and/or Family Leave tax credit to offset your federal self-employment tax.


Can I qualify for small business financial relief programs?
Yes! Self-employed, sole-proprietors and independent contractors are eligible for the Second Phase of the Resiliency Fund. The City's zero-interest loan program SF HELP is also available. The federal Payment Protection Program (PPP) allows borrowers to access fully forgivable loans up to $10M. New funds were added to the EIDL on April 24, 2020, but the SBA is no longer accepting applications at this time. Learn more about these programs on our Business Resources page.


Are you an artist? * CLOSED *

The City added $250,000 to the SF Artist Relief Fund for grants to individual artists up to $2,000 (to use as they see fit) to help artists stay in San Francisco. Applications opened on May 1, 2020 and closed on May 15, 2020.


Individuals (artist, teaching artist, cultural producer, etc.):

Must be a full-time resident of San Francisco
Must not be eligible for, or currently on unemployment



Learn more at the Center for Cultural Innovation Relief Fund and apply here.


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Employers must maintain health care benefits if you take leave to care for yourself or your dependents under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or California Family Rights Act (CFRA). You should consult with your employer or union representative regarding health care coverage during a period of work reduction to see if any additional benefits are available to you.

If you lose your job, federal law generally requires employers to offer you and your family a temporary extension of health care coverage, also known as COBRA. Consult with your employer regarding COBRA enrollment.

Job loss due to COVID-19 is now a qualifying life event for enrollment in Covered California, which provides health care coverage to California residents at affordable and subsidized rates. Alternative coverage may be available through the City’s Healthy San Francisco Program, which provides free or low-cost health care services to uninsured San Francisco residents.

Your employer can now let you change health plans without waiting. Read more information here.


For food resources including information and programs, click here. Find other support services at the Human Services Agency (HSA) ranging from CalFresh to cash assistance, to health insurance (Medi-Cal), job training, supportive care, and expanded services for older adults and people with disabilities. As of April 23, 2020, California households with children who are eligible for free or reduced-price meals at school will now receive up to an extra $365 in food benefits from USDA's Pandemic EBT program. You can now use your EBT card to make purchases online.



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Give2SF Housing Stabilization Program ━ AVAILABLE

San Franciscans, regardless of immigration status, who have experienced a substantial loss of income due to COVID-19 and can't afford rent, utilities, or other housing costs, may apply to receive financial assistance of up to $3,000 per household. Funding is extremely limited and applications will be prioritized based on severity of need. Learn more.

City Option MRA Funding ━ AVAILABLE

Covered employees of SF businesses and nonprofits who have Medical Reimbursement Accounts (MRA) may now request one-time disbursements of their available funds from SF City Option healthcare accounts. You may withdraw funds for basic expenses including food, rent and mortgage payments, and utilities during the declared local emergency. Learn more.

Ride Home Reimbursement ━ AVAILABLE

Essential Workers who walk, bike, or take public transit to their jobs can now get reimbursements for up to 10 taxi rides per month, per person or up to $70 a ride. Learn more.

Federal Cash Payments ━ AVAILABLE

Anyone with an income of $75,000 or less will receive $1,200 and an additional $500 for each dependent child. If you make more than $75,000 the amount will be less. You do not need to claim your payment. If you filed taxes for 2018 or 2019, the IRS will send out rebates automatically. You can check your stimulus payment status here. To get your check through direct deposit go here. If you didn't file taxes and you don't plan to for 2018 or 2019, you can claim your payment here.

State Income Taxes ━ EXTENDED

California business and individual tax filers affected by COVID-19 now have an extra 60-90 days to file and pay state income taxes. For more information, visit the State’s Franchise Tax Board page.

Federal Income Taxes ━ EXTENDED

On March 21, 2020 the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service announced that the federal income tax filing due date is automatically extended from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020. For more information, visit the IRS COVID-19 page.

Residential Evictions ━ LIMITED * EXTENDED *

The City has ordered a moratorium prohibiting residential evictions due to nonpayment of rent owed from March 13, 2020 to June 30, 2020. The temporary prohibition is aimed at stabilizing residents impacted by COVID-19. For more information and help, read here.

Property Tax Payment ━ DEFERRED
The City is deferring the due date for the second installment of property taxes to at least May 4, 2020 without penalty. If you're unable to pay by this date for reasons related to COVID-19, you can request a penalty waiver online (note: these waiver requests will not be accepted until after the property tax deadline). For more information, read the SF Treasurer & Tax Collector's statement.

Water Shutoffs & Late Fees  ━ SUSPENDED

The City has suspended water shutoffs and late fees for at least 60 days during the local COVID-19 Emergency. For information, read the Mayor’s Press Release here.

PG&E Electricity Shutoffs ━ SUSPENDED

PG&E will not disconnect power due to non-payment until further notice and will offer flexible payment plans for those impacted by COVID-19. For more information, visit PG&E’s COVID-19 webpage.

Low-Cost Internet - AVAILABLE

Please find information for free or low-cost Internet here.

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Use trusted resources to stay up-to-date with accurate COVID-19 information:

Webinars to learn best practices and tips:

Mayor London Breed hosted a workforce webinar on May 4, 2020

OEWD hosts Rapid Response/Layoff Response Assistance webinars for businesses and workers affected by COVID-19 with the CA Employment Development Department (EDD)

Tue 2:00 - 3:00 PM, Thurs 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM register here

Guidance for all essential businesses during Shelter In Place orders, and by sector: Food and Restaurant Workers, Homecare Providers, Nightlife
Guidance for Immigrant Californians and relief funds
Learn what jobs the State has designated essential
State Guidance for Employers and Workers
State programs for workers impacted by COVID-19 and FAQs