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ComEd has introduced new assistance programs to further support working families

Event with Arthur Lockhart Resource Institute brings new and existing support services directly to Austin community residents

To further help individuals and families in need, ComEd announced two new bill-assistance programs that will help customers with their credit scores, educate them about financial literacy, and assist those with overdue bills.

The announcement was made at ComEd’s most recent Community Resource Fair, held in collaboration with the Arthur Lockhart Resource Institute’s (ALRI) 35th annual Say No to Drugs & Violence Parade and Resource Fair in Chicago’s Austin neighborhood. The event blended entertainment with access to resources that help boost the success of the community. Joining the event were U.S. Rep. Danny K. Davis, State Rep. LaShawn Ford, Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson, and Chicago Alderman Emma Mitts.

“To sufficiently address the needs of the communities we’re privileged to serve, ComEd supports direct and easy access to an array of support resources,” said Gil C. Quiniones, ComEd CEO. “At ComEd, we strive to provide support that goes further than helping families pay their bills. By collaborating with community organizations, we can identify the most relevant services needed, then provide solutions directly to our people who need them.”

By collaborating with ALRI, ComEd helped expand the number and types of resources available this year to residents across Chicago’s West Side. While the annual parade focuses on redirecting energies of local youth from violence into positive endeavors, the resource fair, which began under the stewardship of the late West Side clergyman and progressive community advocate, Rev. Dr. Arthur Lockhart, helps residents with bill-assistance options, health and child support services, housing, and job training programs.

“For more than 35 years, the ALRI has dedicated its services and programs to the advancement and improvement of the residents on the West Side of Chicago,” said Dr. Elizabeth Lockhart, executive director at ALRI. “ALRI focuses on providing health, education, and economic growth to children, seniors, veterans, and low-income families.”

ComEd’s new assistance programs

  • Bill Payment Assistance is ComEd’s newest grant to help income-eligible customers pay their ComEd bills. Current ComEd customers with a household income 80% or less of the average median income may receive $150 to $500 based on the account status.
  • Credit Empowerment provides private, one-on-one support to help individuals build stronger credit scores. In collaboration with Working Credit, the program provides an overview of how the credit system works, helps participants create a personalized credit action plan to help them improve their specific credit situation and provides information on ComEd energy-efficiency offerings to help manage energy use and bills.

“Today, credit is increasingly foundational to creating a strong path to financial security. Credit is not just relevant for big-ticket items like purchasing a house or a car. Credit impacts rental housing options, the cost of monthly expenses, the ability to finance a new cell phone, and the ability to weather an economic shock,” said Morgan Spears, Chief Community Engagement Officer at Working Credit. “Working Credit is thrilled to provide equitable and accurate credit education and one-on-one credit-building counseling to ComEd’s customers through its Credit Empowerment program. Building credit builds so much for people and their families and serves as a key stepping stone towards financial freedom.”

These offerings add to a growing range of programs to which ComEd can connect income-eligible families and individuals to help them manage energy bills and access clean-energy options. They include payment assistance options, energy-efficiency offerings, community solar programs and more.

ComEd customers who are unable to attend its community events can access the same assistance options through the energy company’s Smart Assistance Manager, or SAM is a free, online self-service tool that helps families and individuals more easily access financial-assistance and energy-saving options that are available to them, based on their income and household size. Customers without internet access can call ComEd at 800-334-7661 (800-EDISON1), Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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