WE ACT for Environmental Justice Issues Statement on LIHEAP Funding Ending 24 Days Into Summer

New York State’s Most Vulnerable Will No Longer Have Financial Assistance
to Cool Their Homes in Hottest Summer on Record

July 14, 2023
Contact: Chris Dobens, chris@weact.org, 718-679-8542

NEW YORK – With New York State’s allotment of federal funding for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) – which the Cooling Assistance Program of the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) – ending today, a mere 24 days into what’s already shaping up to be the hottest summer on record, WE ACT for Environmental Justice’s Director of Policy, Sonal Jessel, issued the following statement:

“New York is facing a climate emergency, as LIHEAP – the federally-funded and state-administered program that provides financial support for low-income residents to keep their homes cool during the hottest months of summer – has already been exhausted. Even though we are less than a month into summer, and have already set multiple records for the hottest day in recorded history, those struggling to pay their utility bills due to the added cost of fans and air-conditioning can no longer get assistance – or relief – from this extreme heat, the deadliest impact of climate change.

The State and the City must take immediate action to fill this gap, finding funding to continue this cooling assistance program so that our most vulnerable New Yorkers – those living in low-income communities and communities of color – can survive the rest of the summer, which we aren’t even halfway through. And our Congressional and State Representatives must ensure that there is adequate funding for LIHEAP next year, as this is the second year in a row that they failed to provide sufficient resources to protect New York’s most vulnerable.”

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WE ACT for Environmental Justice is a Northern Manhattan membership-based organization whose mission is to build healthy communities by ensuring that people of color and/or low-income residents participate meaningfully in the creation of sound and fair environmental health and protection policies and practices. WE ACT has offices in New York and Washington, D.C. Visit us at weact.org and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.


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