Iowa Department of Human Rights Newsletter

iowa department of human rights

August 7, 2020

We are here to help.

The Iowa Department of Human Rights (DHR) brings strength to Iowa's rich heritage.  Our three divisions - Community Action Agencies, Community Advocacy and Services, and Criminal and Juvenile Justice Planning - work to reduce cultural, social, and economic barriers to opportunities for Iowans to succeed.

Join Our Team


The Iowa Department of Human Rights is partnering with Iowa AmeriCorps 4-H Outreach to have AmeriCorps members serve as the Coordinator for the State of Iowa Youth Advisory Council and the Coordinator for the Iowa Youth Congress

For details on the positions and and how to apply, visit

State's Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program Expanded Criteria to Assist More Iowans

Iowa Finance Authority's COVID-19 Iowa Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program provides short-term relief to income-eligible renters and homeowners who are at risk of eviction or foreclosure due to a documented COVID-19 related loss of income. On August 4, 2020, Iowa Finance Authority announced that the program's eligibility criteria have been expanded to allow Iowans who have been receiving $600 a week in federal unemployment stimulus benefits to apply for assistance.  Applicants who have applied previously and were declined due to unemployment benefit status are welcome to reapply for assistance. For additional details, visit

Housing Recovery Helpline 855-300-5885

Iowa COVID-19 Free Legal Hotline

Iowa COVID-19 Legal Advice Hotline 800-332-0419   Iowans experiencing legal issues related to COVID-19, such as eviction, denial of unemployment benefits, employment issues or identity theft may call the hotline.  Callers can leave a message, and a representative will call them back. The hotline is a project of Iowa Legal Aid, the Iowa State Bar Association, and the Polk County Bar Association’s Volunteer Lawyers Project.

Free Counseling-COVID Recovery Iowa

The stress of COVID-19 is taking on a toll on the mental health of Iowans, including health care workers.  The Iowa Department of Human Services' program, COVID Recovery Iowa, offers free virtual counseling and resources for all Iowans affected by COVID-19.  

Spanish, COVID Recovery Iowa


Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

If you are a farmer or rancher whose operation has been directly affected by the coronavirus pandemic, the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) provides direct relief to producers who faced price declines and additional marketing costs due to COVID-19.  The USDA is accepting applications now through August 28, 2020. Producers should apply through the Farm Service Agency at their local USDA Service Center.

USDA Announces $15 Million in Funding Opportunities to Support Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced approximately $15 million in available funding to help socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers own and operate successful farms. Funding is made through the USDA’s Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program (also known as the 2501 Program). The program is administered by the USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement (OPPE). Learn more about the 2501 funding opportunity.

CDC Guidance for Agricultural Workers and Employers

Spanish, carpooling

According to the CDC, agriculture work sites, shared worker housing, and shared worker transportation vehicles present unique challenges for preventing and controlling the spread of COVID-19. Preparation and prevention measures can help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19, such wearing a cloth face covering and gloves, not sharing tools, disinfecting tools, social distancing, cleaning, and other health and safety practices.  View the CDC guidance and information on workers' rights to a safe workplace.  

Food Resources

Iowa food resources such as state programs, school meal services, and food banks, can be found at the State’s coronavirus website:

The Feeding Iowans Task Force was created by Governor Kim Reynolds to assist Iowans impacted by food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic.The Task Force has compiled some graphics about food resources in multiple languages.  Visit the State's coronavirus website for more information. 

Vietnamese, food

Community Action Agencies

Many community action agencies offer assistance such as food banks, food delivery initiatives, clothing, diapers, and addressing other emergency needs. There is a network of 17 community action agencies that serves all of Iowa's 99 counties. To find a community action agency near you, visit the Iowa Department of Human Rights' website.

Language Access Plan for Iowa's Courts

The State Court Administrator has approved a Language Access Plan for Iowa's Courts to guide the courts' efforts to fulfill their mission to administer justice under law equally to all persons, including those who are limited in their ability to speak or understand English. The plan describes a detailed strategy for how Iowa's courts provide and manage language assistance services.  It also provides references to key Iowa statutes, court rules, and information resources to assist court personnel and judicial officers in their efforts to achieve the plan's goals and objectives.

Learn more at the Iowa Judicial Branch's website.   

COVID-19 Test Iowa Sites/Schedules

The Test Iowa COVID-19 test is free and available to Iowans wishing to get tested, regardless of symptoms or potential exposure. Before heading to a Test Iowa location, you must first complete an online assessment at the Test Iowa website at  You will then receive instructions on your scheduled appointment and location. Information about the COVID-19 Test Iowa locations and schedules is available at the State's website

COVID-19 Language Resources

American Sign Language Videos-CDC

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-Resources for Limited English Proficient Populations

Congolese Health Partnership Videos

Coronavirus, State Website

Crescent Community Health Center-Marshallese Language

EMBARC Ethnic Minorities of Burma and Advocacy and Resource Center

Iowa Department of Human Rights-Language Access

Iowa Department of Public Health

Iowa Spanish Helpline 515-344-3936 

Multi-Lingual Hotline  1-877-558-2609
(Refugee Alliance of Central Iowa and partners)

Test Iowa-COVID-19 Testing (Spanish available)

Previous Newsletters

July 24, 2020

July 10, 2020              

June 26, 2020


Are there other resources we should know about? Let us know.

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Iowa Department of Human Rights
Lucas State Office Building
321 E 12th Street
Des Moines, IA 50319
515-242-5640 or 1-800-351-4659
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