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United States Army
Army Emergency Relief - Army Community Service
10288 4th Armored Division Drive
Fort Drum, NY 13602
If you need emergency assistance, you can expect to get help from your installation, your branch of service resources. There are programs to support you in a variety of situations, including victim assistance, emergencies en route and service-specific relief societies. Below, you’ll find types of assistance, contact information, and detailed procedures and guidance to help you through any tough circumstances that you or your family may face.
ARMY EMERGENCY RELIEF (AER) Fort Drum 315-772-6560/8873
Army Emergency Relief (AER) provides emergency financial assistance to active duty Soldiers, Retirees and Family members during times of valid emergency need. AER provides Interest free loans and/or grants to those who qualify for financial assistance. After normal duty hours, contact the American Red Cross for AER assistance at 1-877-272-7337 for emergency travel.
AER CAN assist with the following approved categories:
· Non-Receipt of Pay/Lost or Stolen Funds
· Medical and Hospital Expenses
· Funeral Expenses (Assistance increased for dependent funerals from $10k to $15K)
· Emergency Travel Expenses (Emergency Leave travel for immediate family members will be processed at a minimum 50% Grant)
· Privately Owned Vehicle
· Fire or Disasters
· Dental Care for Dependents (Will start as a 50% Grant at a minimum, no cap)
· Travel Funds for Relocation
· Minor Home Repairs (home owners)
· Purchase and Repairs of Basic Essential Appliances
· Child Car Seats
· Cranial Helmets (Processed as a Grant only)
· Purchase of Basic Essential Furniture
· Travel Expenses Related to “Welcome Home”
· Soldier Hospitalized and listed as Very Seriously ill/Seriously ill (ITO)
· Travel Expenses when directed by a Medical Treatment Facility to another Medical Facility
· Assistance provided to Dependents involved in Domestic Violence Cases
· New Category: Immigration Assistance (Processed as a Grant or Grant/Loan combination)
· New Category: Special Needs Assistance (for special needs equipment not covered by TriCare or other Insurance)
· New Category: Spouse Re-Licensing & Re-Certification Assistance (capped at $2500)
· New Program: Child Care (in association with a PCS move and enrollment in the Army Fee Assistance Program)
AER CANNOT assist with the following:
· Financing ordinary leave or vacation
· Paying fines or legal expenses
· Helping to liquidate or consolidate debt (possible exception’s)
· Assisting with house purchase
· Covering bad checks or pay credit card bill, GTC
· Financing New Car Loans
ACCESS TO AER ASSISTANCE:
AER now has one application form (AER form 101 replaces the 600/700 forms) for both Routine and Commander/1SG Quick Assist Programs. The application form 101 details required information and possible required supporting documentation.
The Routine process has changed. Effective 9 September 2015, Direct Access is authorized for all Soldiers, regardless of rank, EXCEPT when one of the four situations exists:
· Soldiers in Initial Entry Training (IET) will not be authorized direct AER access.
· Soldiers must have a minimum of 12 months’ Time in Service (determined from LES) to receive direct access to AER.
· If the assistance request places the Soldier/Family in the high risk category, IAW Army Directive 2015-21 para 14 Army Risk Reduction Program, then direct AER access is not available and command involvement is required.
· Very important: Regardless of rank, financial assistance will be limited to two assistance cases (loan or grant) within a 12 month period without command involvement.
The Commander/1SG Quick Assist process is a streamlined process where a Company Commander or unit First Sergeant can authorize a Soldier a loan up to $2000, to be repaid over the maximum time of 15 months, if the ETS date allows. The Commander/1SG Quick Assist Program has the following guidelines:
· The Commander/1SG Quick Assist can only be utilized for those approved categories of assistance.
· The Commander/1SG Quick Assist will always be processed as an interest-free loan, never as a grant (exception Emergency Leave travel).
· A Soldier can only have one Commander/1SG Quick Assist at a time.
· To process a Commander/1SG Quick Assist, in most cases, only the most recent EOM LES is required for supporting documentation.
All applications with command involvement must be signed by the Company Command or the unit First Sergeant. However, in their absence, a Sergeant First Class or above who have assumption of command orders, is authorized to approve and sign AER applications. A copy of the assumption of command orders will be required to accompany the Soldiers application. All applications signed by the Soldiers command will have an email sent to the approving official giving them the final disposition of the case.
Have questions/concerns contact our office during duty hours, 07:30-16:30 Monday-Friday or for after duty emergencies that need attention immediately contact the American Red Cross 1-877-272-7337
American Red Cross
The American Red Cross (ARC) is always available to assist in emergency situations. Call toll-free: 1-877-272-7337, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, or contact the nearest ARC chapter listed in the local phone directory.
One of the fundamental missions of the American Red Cross is to keep the American people in touch with their loved ones in the Armed Forces during times of Family crisis. The Red Cross assists military Families daily with urgent messages such as a serious illness, death of a loved one or the joyous birth of a child. All messages are verified by the Red Cross.
It is important that Family members have the following information regarding the service member when initiating a message: Full Name, Rank, , Unit, Complete Mailing Address, and Rear Detachment Phone (if available).
The Fort Drum ARC office is co-located with AER, building 435 MWR Drive. They can be reached at 315-772-6561 or DSN 312-772-6561. Their hours of operation are Monday - Friday 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. For after hours emergencies contact the Toll-free number listed above.
If financial assistance is needed for emergency travel on nights, holidays and weekends, service members should contact the Hero Care Network at 1-877-272-7337.
Information & Referral
Army Community Service Information and Referral is available to answer your questions and refer you to the proper agency to meet your needs. For assistance call 315-772-6557 or DSN 312-772-6557. Hours of operation are Monday - Friday 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
The Salvation Army operates a Family Store and Soup kitchen in Watertown. In addition, they operate an after-hours emergency food pantry. The Salvation Army can be reached at 315-785-5582.
American Automobile Association (AAA)
The American Automobile Association (AAA) is a membership based resource for travelers. AAA offers its members 24-hour access to emergency road service across the US and Canada - and you're covered in any car. AAA members can request roadside assistance by calling 1-800-AAA-HELP.
There are several food pantries in the local area that can assist with emergency food needs. Army Community Service (ACS) and AER maintains a list of food pantries in the local area that can assist in an emergency.
Should you experience a medical emergency in transit, call 911 or visit the nearest hospital emergency room.
If you choose to take and Advance Pay of your Basic Pay, be advised that repayments will be automatically withdrawn from the service member’s pay monthly until the advance is paid back. This will reduce the service member’s monthly pay, in some cases drastically.
For emergencies please contact the Military Police at 315-772-5156. The Victim Advocate Coordinator/Sexual Assault Response Coordinator can be reached by calling 315-772-5914.
Should you experience an emergency while in transit to Fort Drum, the following agencies may be able to assist you with your emergency need. Access to local telephone numbers for the area you are in is available by calling the telephone operator. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or visit the closest hospital emergency room. 24-hour referral assistance is available from Military OneSource at 1-800-342-9647.
To assist you while in transit, make sure you hand carry all of your important documents with you. Do not ship these with your household goods. Make sure you have important phone numbers with you, such as an information number for your new duty station and your sponsor's phone number.
Arrival DelayIf you're in transit and an emergency arises call the Reception Activity Welcome Center at 1-800-661-7158 or 315-772-7529/0423 and let them know the nature of your emergency. Remember, if you cannot arrive on your reporting date and you do not call you may be considered to be Absent Without Leave (AWOL).