CHICAGO – As temperatures begin to drop below freezing, state Rep. John D’Amico, D-Chicago, is encouraging residents who might be struggling to pay their utility bills or lack access to housing to use free, local warming centers as safe havens during the cold winter season.
“For many, especially seniors, people with developmental disabilities and those with low incomes, staying warm during the winter can pose a challenge,” D’Amico said. “So it is critical that people know the dangers of exposure to the cold and take steps to keep themselves safe by using a warming center if necessary.”
Warming centers are accessible throughout the area and provide a safe, warm place for residents living without heat, or who are trying to limit their utility usage. Warming centers are available at the Department of Human Services Building, located at 8020 St. Louis Ave. in Skokie, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the North Area Community Center, located at 845 W. Wilson Ave. in Chicago, Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
D’Amico also wants to remind residents that landlords must heat residential buildings to at least 68 degrees during the day and 66 degrees at night. Residents unable resolve a heating problem with a landlord should call 3-1-1.
“The next several months will have extremely cold days,” D’Amico continued. “I encourage residents to check in frequently with loved ones and neighbors to make sure their homes are heated during the harsh winter weather we have here in the Chicago area.”