Iowa Department of Human Rights Newsletter

iowa department of human rights

December 22, 2021

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.

Disaster Assistance

Governor Kim Reynolds has recently issued disaster proclamations for a number of counties in response to the December 15 severe weather. The governor's proclamations allow state resources to be utilized to respond to and recover from the effects of this severe weather.  

In addition, the proclamations activate the Iowa Individual Assistance Grant Program for qualifying residents, along with the Disaster Case Management Program. The Iowa Individual Assistance Grant Program provides grants of up to $5,000 for households with incomes up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level. Grants are available for home or car repairs, replacement of clothing or food, and temporary housing expenses. Original receipts are required for those seeking reimbursement for actual expenses related to storm recovery. The deadlines, grant application, and instructions are available on the Iowa Department of Human Services website at  Potential applicants have 45 days from the date of the proclamation to submit a claim.  
The Disaster Case Management Program addresses serious needs related to disaster-related hardship, injury, or adverse conditions. Disaster case managers work with clients to create a disaster recovery plan and provide guidance, advice, and referral to obtain a service or resource. There are no income eligibility requirements for this program; it closes 180 days from the date of the governor's proclamation. For information on the Disaster Case Management Program, contact your local community action association or visit

How to have a healthy and safe holiday season

The holidays may look different once again for many people--adults and children alike.  Healthcare workers are stressed; people have endured losses; households may be experiencing financial challenges; and just getting ready for the holidays in and of itself can be stressful.  Here are some resources to help you manage stress during this busy time. 

  • COVID Recovery Iowa offers free, confidential virtual counseling and assistance for all Iowans affected by COVID-19.  Language interpretation is available.    
    • Warm Line 1-844-775-9276
    • Iowa Concern Line 1-800-1985 
    • Spanish Line 531-800-3687
  • Your Life Iowa - Free, confidential support and resources for problems with alcohol, drugs, gambling, suicidal thoughts or mental health. Call 1-855-581-8111, text 1-855-895-8398, or chat at   Language assistance is available. 
  • How Right Now has resources for specific populations and categories of need.  
  • NAMI Video - Navigating the Winter and Holiday Blues 

Welcome to Iowa Winter

Iowa Workforce Development to Launch Reemployment Case Management in January

Iowa Workforce Development will launch its new Reemployment Case Management (RCM) program next month, formally beginning a new chapter in how the agency will approach unemployment moving forward.

Beginning the week of January 9, the new program will offer extensive job search assistance to newly unemployed Iowans with the goal of getting them back to work more quickly. The RCM program has been specifically tailored to Iowa’s unemployment process based on proven national models. Its intention is to provide enhanced services so claimants can more quickly discover the best possible pathway toward a new job and minimize the amount of time spent receiving unemployment benefits.

For more information, see the FAQ.  

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

Hawaii Office of Language Access-Youtube

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  

Test Iowa-Free COVID-19 Test Kits 

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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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