LOS ANGELES – The National Association of Counties (NACo) has recognized the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs (DCBA) and its partners with a prestigious 2021 Achievement Award in the category of Civic Education and Public Information for the launch of the L.A. County Disaster Help Center.
In immediate response to the COVID-19 pandemic, DCBA, in partnership with L.A. County Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services (WDACS) and the Los Angeles County Development Authority, launched the Disaster Help Center to help business owners, non-profits, workers, homeowners, landlords, and tenants navigate the impacts of an unprecedented pandemic.
“We are immensely proud to receive this national award for the Disaster Help Center,” said DCBA Director Rafael Carbajal. “Above that, the biggest recognition is the positive impact that our work has meant to all the small business owners, nonprofits, workers, property owners, and renters that we continue to serve.”
The Help Center has operated daily since its launch on March 26, 2020, with live agents who answer COVID-19-related calls from LA County residents in the areas of emergency aid, funding sources, reopening protocols, eviction protections, and rental assistance. Help Center agents connected workers to tenant resources and unemployment help. In total, Help Center agents have managed more than 36,500 calls and 2,600 emails in nine languages to address the needs of LA County’s diverse population.
The Help Center was supported through the LACountyHelpCenter.org website which centralized all available emergency resources and COVID-19 related guidance. The Help Center website has received more than 320,000 pageviews since its launch.
Since 1970, NACO’s annual awards have honored innovative and effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents. Nationally, awards are given in 18 different categories that reflect the vast, comprehensive services counties provide.