ALMOST $25 million in disaster relief payments has been paid out to more than 60,000 Queenslanders doing it tough following Tropical Cyclone Debbie.
The Immediate Hardship Payments, which consist of $180 per person or up to $900 for a family of five or more, are made available under the joint Commonwealth-State Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.
Speaking to reporters in Mackay today, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the payments helped cover the cost of essential items such as food, clothing, medicine and accommodation.
ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT
The Premier paid tribute to the staff of the Department of Communities and the 235 Ready Reserve staff across the public service to boost recovery efforts.
“Almost 5000 government workers were deployed in preparation for and response to Debbie,” Ms Palaszczuk said. “Their work, alongside volunteers and charity workers, has made an incredible difference.”
“On behalf of all Queenslanders, I want to thank them for their efforts – whether it is administering assistance, reconnecting electricity, re-establishing road and rail access, getting schools ready for the classes to resume last week, operating recovery centres and the Community Recovery Hotline or many more tasks.”
The Community Recovery Hotline has received more than 61,000 calls for assistance since Cyclone Debbie ripped through the state last month.
For information about disaster relief, call the Community Recovery Hotline on 1800 173 349 or go online to www.qld.gov.au/communityrecovery.