Farm and Food Work Relief


Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

What documents for proof of employment can I provide if my previous employer is no longer in business and I don’t have any income documentation?

Cherokee Nation is only accepting the following documents for proof of employment: W2, 1099 (only applicable if non-contractor/owner), paystub, or employment verification letter dated within the pandemic period –January 27, 2020 through May 11, 2023. If a previous employer has since shutdown, it is recommended to make attempts at reaching the previous owner and/or person in direct management position, or providing one of the accepted forms of proof of employment.

What does frontline worker mean?

A frontline worker is an employee who must be physically present in order to deliver their work and services. Frontline workers are engaged directly with the public or provide essential products/services to communities and/or society at-large. For FFWR purposes, frontline workers are those engaged in fieldwork, livestock work, or meatpacking work excluding those working in management positions. Examples of frontline work in these worker groups:

  • Field Workers: planting, tending, harvesting crops, and post-harvest activities as listed below, including operation of farm machinery on crop farms.
  • Livestock Workers: tending livestock, milking cows, or caring for poultry, including operation of farm machinery on livestock or poultry operations.
  • Meatpacking Workers: animal slaughtering and meat or poultry processing, including meat or poultry packaging.

What is an employment verification letter?

An employment verification letter is a document that serves as proof of employment for a current employer or past employer. It is signed and completed by the employer. Employment verification letters contain the following information: employer name, employer address, employer FEIN (taxpayer ID), employer signature, employee name, employee address, dates of employment, and employee job title. If submitting proof of employment by an employment letter, please utilize the template found on this website under the 'Additional Information' page.

What is needed to apply?

Workers will need to provide sufficient proof of employment at a food processing facility, meatpacking facility or farm.

W2, 1099, employer verification letter, or paystubs. Documentation must indicate the date of service, contain the employer name and address, and reflect the applicant’s name and address.

Workers must also submit sufficient proof of identity when requesting funds.

Acceptable state or federally issued identification include: current driver’s license, passport, state issued ID, or military ID.

Members of federally recognized tribes must also submit proof of tribal membership.

Official tribe citizenship record from a federally recognized tribe that reflects your name, date of birth, and address.

When will I receive my payment?

Payment processing may take up to 8 weeks. Any inconsistent or missing data may delay processing, and further action by Cherokee Nation staff may take additional time before processing is complete.

Who is eligible to apply?

To be eligible for this funding you must be a member of a federally recognized tribe or live within the Cherokee Nation Reservation.

Agricultural and meatpacking workers who were paid a minimum of 1 hour of qualified employment within the period of January 27, 2020 through May 11, 2023.