More than 847,000 PA households are currently at risk of utility shutoff. Residential utility customers in PA owe their utilities over $811 million dollars. The most vulnerable low-income customers (below 300% of the Federal Poverty Level) are currently protected from shutoff. However, these protections are scheduled to end March 31st, 2021, and there is no plan in place to continue protections for vulnerable customers or forgive their utility debt in an equitable manner.
The Public Utility Commission has asked for input on appropriate next steps by February 16, 2021.
Here’s what you can do to help:
- Share this handy action packet (developed by our partners at CLS!) with your contacts. This is the biggest and most important thing you can do! We’ve created a toolkit with specific actions that individuals can take to demonstrate their support for extending utility protections for vulnerable customers. Please share this packet and/or the information contained within it with your networks.
- Register here for our virtual briefing for organizations on February 1, 2021 from 3-4 PM. Or contact us via email (email@example.com) or our partners at Community Legal Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you’d like to learn more about this issue and hear about additional advocacy opportunities.
- File comments on behalf of your organization or add your name to our sign-on letter to the Public Utility Commission (PUC), demonstrating your organization’s support for these issues. Comments are due by February 15, please sign today!
We are asking the Public Utility Commission of Pennsylvania to:
1) Extend the current protections for low-income customers and
2) Develop a plan to equitably forgive utility debt.
We need the help of our community partners to amplify these asks and make sure that the PUC has a plan in place to protect low-income customers after March 31, 2021…and to equitably address mounting utility debts!
We appreciate your support on the important issue of keeping households protected from utility shutoff. For more information or if you have questions, please contact Madi Keaton at email@example.com.