Job loss, medical emergency, car troubles — we’ve all been there. But this year with the coronavirus pandemic, it’s been harder than ever for many families to pay their utility bills.
For those experiencing financial hardships, SAWS offers qualifying residential customers a shoulder to lean on through our Uplift assistance program.
“The purpose of SAWS Uplift is to help our neighbors,” said Gavino Ramos, vice president of Communications and External Affairs. “Sometimes that means giving them a little extra time to pay their bill. In other cases it might mean helping them fix a plumbing issue.”
Established in 2018, Uplift assists more than 32,000 families each year with monthly bill assistance up to $28.35 depending on family size and income.
Uplift makes it easy to apply for 14 different assistance programs through a single, simple online form, including a new option that gives disabled veterans a payment extension on their monthly SAWS bill.
Additional programs are offered to assist customers in need of plumbing repairs they may not be able to afford.
“On the surface it seems like we’re just ensuring that their water isn’t turned off,” explained Rebecca Gonzalez, SAWS Uplift assistance specialist. “But from the one-on-one conversations we’ve had with our customers, we’ve realized that to them it’s so much more than that.
“Whether it’s the senior benefit, disability benefit or affordability discount, our programs allow customers to use those funds on other vital necessities such as purchasing groceries,” Gonzalez said. To learn more and apply online, visit saws.org/uplift.