With the winter season upon us, many families are struggling to keep their heat on, as well as their lights. Utility companies say there are several places where people can turn, to get assistance to rising energy bills.
With Thanksgiving just 3 days away, the Irving family's gas has been cut off, and their Entergy bill is already $500.00 in the hole.
"They brought us wood and pre heaters with the light bill, the lights are going to get cut off" said Victoria Irving. "I have called everywhere I did everything, I can't leave home it's a 24 hour thing with my mom. She has Alzheimer's with dementia, she's 56 years old."
"The most important thing a customer can do is to let us know they might be having a little bit of an issue with their bill" said Entergy spokesperson Mara Hartman. "The sooner a customer can let us know it may be a problem to pay all or part of a bill then the more options we have to help them."
Entergy Mississippi sponsors five different programs designed to help customers in extenuating circumstances. Their power to care program offers help with one time payments. The federally funded low income home energy assistance program, also known as LIHEAP, can provide help for longer periods.
"If you qualify for that again, low income elderly disabled young families with children, then you can get help for as long as you can show you need help month to month," said Hartman.
Enrollment in LIHEAP, which can help with multiple utilities, can be done through the Hinds County Human Resource Agency, the Salvation Army and several other community agencies. Utility companies say they'll always try to avoid disconnecting their customers in need.
To enroll in LIHEAP, contact:
Hinds County Human Resource Agency
258 Maddox Road, Jackson MS
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