Fort McMurray Evacuation Effects Temporary Accommodation availability far and wide

The tragedy in Fort McMurray has displaced thousands of families. Many of these have travelled south to Edmonton. As a result, it should come as no surprise that Edmonton temporary accommodation facilities are now full with no foreseeable vacancies. However, while many employees have fled to Edmonton, many have also gone back to other cities that they may call home or to cities where family resides. As a result, All Points is seeing increased occupancy rates in temporary living as far away as Calgary, Vancouver and even Regina and Saskatoon.

Most evacuees want to go back to Fort McMurray as soon as possible. The Provincial Government has advised that they will be able to announce a return plan within two weeks, therefore travel back may be possible in a matter of weeks for some, but for others it may not be possible. Even if homes were not destroyed, some may not be habitable due to smoke or heat damage or damage caused by the firefighting effort itself.

All Points will be watching this temporary accommodation low vacancy rate situation as we head into the busier summer months. Those with domestic relocation, global assignments or global permanent relocations into any of the above named cities should prepare for a challenging time in locating traditional temporary accommodation for necessary interim periods.

During this waiting period FMM Evacuees should know the following:

1. Register with the Canadian Red Cross – each family should register with the Canadian Red Cross. There is an online registration option. Support is being distributed via this agency and updates on the return to FMM
2. Contact your Insurer – employees who are homeowners should be checking with their insurance companies regarding assistance for temporary housing benefits ; employees who are tenants and only have coverage for contents and should check with their insurer for coverage
3. Financial Assistance is on its way to help ease your predicament.
a.  Alberta Government will shortly be providing information on how evacuees can access pre-loaded debit cards with emergency assistance totalling $1,250 for every adult and $500 for each dependent.
b.  The Canadian government says it will work to speed up employment insurance claims
c.  Canada Post has announced a mail forwarding program free of charge for Fort McMurray and area residents

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