Hundreds of people a day reaching out to JCCEO for help paying rent and utilities

JCCEO working overtime to help those in need

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Many people are struggling right now to make ends meet. We saw that Friday in applications for help to pay rent and utilities.

Hundreds of people a day are reaching out to the Jefferson County Committee for Economic Opportunity. Using CARES Act money, the JCCEO says it’s doing the best it can with a staff of about five people to help as many people as possible.

“We’re probably getting three times the amount of requests that we have in the past,” Hollis Johnson, the JCCEO Director of Community Support said.

Johnson tells us many people are being evicted from their homes. Their power bills are past due.

The agency works closely with utility companies and landlords to try and help, but with so many reaching out for help right now, Johnson says it’s putting them behind.

“Someone has to sit and sort those. We have to make sure we have the right documents because the grant requires that we have certain documents,” Johnson said.

Johnson wants to assure the community, JCCEO will help you. It’s just taking time.

“If you’ll be patient with us, we will get to you. Let us know if we need to contact a landlord to let them know where they are in the process. We’ll be happy to do that. Give us a little time to call you back because we have a lot of phone calls coming in,” Johnson said.

The agency did have a glitch with the phone lines this week, but Johnson says everything is working now.

Earlier this week, a gentleman reached out to us for help after not hearing from the JCCEO.

Johnson says hundreds of people were in front of him, but luckily his situation with his utility bill has been taken care of.

If you need help, you can call JCCEO at 205-327-7500 or you can visit jcceo.org/coronavirus

For utility assistance, email your information to liheap@jcceo.org

For rent assistance, send an email to csbg@jcceo.org

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