As we move forward during these extraordinary times, Peoples Gas stays focused on the health, safety and needs of our team members, customers and communities. Our essential work of providing safe, clean and reliable natural gas service to customers across Florida is our highest priority.
We’re taking extra precautions to help minimize the spread of COVID-19, adapting and adjusting our work schedules and procedures to help protect our team members, colleagues, contractors and customers.
We also recognize the power of community, people joining together and taking action to help individuals, families and organizations in need. Through our community investment program, we’re dedicated to making our communities stronger, safer, and more resilient as we continue with our COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.
Working with our community partners, our civic and philanthropic commitments are focused on organizations providing essential and critical services for hunger relief, housing assistance, crisis resources, childcare for frontline workers, virtual assistance and educational services.
Our community partnerships include American Red Cross, Florida Virtual School Foundation, Boys & Girls Clubs, Advent Health, Feeding America, Meals on Wheels, The Salvation Army and United Way. Working with these organizations allows us to provide direct support to the people, families and small businesses facing health, safety, and economic hardships during these trying times.
In partnership with our affiliate Tampa Electric, we have contributed $1 million to help our communities in need. Contributions include $500,000 to our Share program administered by the Salvation Army to help our customers pay their utility bills. An additional donation of $500,000 supports Florida’s charities and organizations that are aiding on the front lines in providing housing, food, healthcare and other essential services.
Our team members mobilized to support a Virtual Food Bank Drive for Feeding America affiliates throughout Florida, raising more than $55,000 with a dollar-for-dollar match from our parent company, Emera. This donation funds more than 220,000 meals for Floridians in need.
We are also working throughout the state to provide necessary support for organizations and institutions exercising health and safety precautions, including our recent contribution to Jacksonville University to help provide students with free flu vaccinations this season. Additionally, we contributed $25,000 to the Early Learning Coalition of Hillsborough County (ELCHC) COVID-19 Relief Supply Drive to purchase infrared medical-grade thermometers for local childcare facilities.
“Our goal is to provide assistance and peace of mind so customers can stay focused on what’s important—keeping themselves and their family safe and healthy,” said T.J. Szelistowski, president of Peoples Gas. “It is important for our customers to know that we’re here for them, working with trusted community partners across the state, from the Panhandle to South Florida.”
For the months and years ahead, we anticipate continuing our targeted community investments to help provide critical care and spur the state’s economic recovery. According to a Wells Fargo Securities Economics Group Special Commentary, the reemergence of COVID-19 could continue to impact Florida. While keeping pace with our first phase of community support for essential services, we will also be focusing on economic recovery efforts to help businesses in our communities.
For more information about resources available to help customers, visit peoplesgas.com/updates.