7 On Your Side helps center for people with intellectual disabilities get heat back on

Nina Pineda Image
Thursday, January 25, 2024
7 On Your Side helps center for people with disabilities get heat back on
Nina Pineda helped a center for adults with disabilities get their heat and hot water back on after a mix up.

NEW JERSEY (WABC) -- A rehabilitation program for adults with intellectual disabilities has been in the cold for several weeks leaving participants with nowhere to go.

A mix-up on the billing caused the heat and hot water at the facility to be shut off, then their utility meter was locked and eventually removed.

The day program is filled with all the fun, learning, and routine that dozens of participants, young adults with intellectual challenges, crave.

"This place is very important and seeing staff and socializing with their peers," said Yolanda Rozier, programming director.

But instead of dancing with their teacher or eating at their desk, it's empty at Disabilities Allies.

That's because it's a frigid 59 degrees and the heat and hot water suddenly got shut off.

"It was freezing cold. We couldn't figure out why, we came in the back and there was as lock on it," Rozier said.

Rozier checked the PSE&G bill, but it was current.

Every month since October, the heat has gone cold, forcing clients like Daniel, who like to eat alone, to a nearby much noisier facility instead.

They believe somehow the Day Hab meter got crossed with another delinquent account in the same strip mall, but couldn't figure out the problem. So, they asked 7 On Your Side to turn up the heat.

7 On Your Side contacted PSE&G, and they contacted their customer within the hour. The problem was a crossed meter where one customer's usage and billing gets transferred to another customer. The very next morning they put in a brand new meter!

The students returned and the music was back.

They even got a credit to their PSE&G account in time to celebrate a favorite staffer's birthday.

PSE&G says that Disabilities Allies will be getting a big credit for the gas they paid for, but didn't use. "We thank 7 On Your Side for bringing this to our attention," the utility said.

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