Mayor Slay and representatives from the Health Department, Human Services Department, and Public Safety Department made home visits to individuals on the City's Functional Needs Registry to ensure they are staying safe and cool during this period of excessive heat.
City employees have attempted to reach all of the approximately 3,600 residents on the Functional Needs Registry over the last few days. Today, more than 52 City employees made home visits to the individuals who could not be contacted by phone. Over 1,100 homes were visited today. When residents were not contacted, City officials checked with next-door neighbors to see whether they've seen their neighbors recently.
The City identified approximately 20 individuals who required an urgent response. Appropriate authorities have been notified and will follow up with these individuals immediately. Many other individuals expressed interest in help with utility bills or other types of assistance.
"This is a valuable use of our resources," said Mayor Slay. "The people on the City's Functional Needs Registry are some of our most vulnerable. Many of these people don't have friends and family members nearby. I was happy to go out into the neighborhoods to ensure these residents are staying safe and cool."
The residents the Mayor visited all had working air conditioners, but some needed utility assistance. Residents can determine if they are eligible for utility assistance (or request an air conditioner) by calling Cool Down St. Louis at 314-241-7668 or the United Way at 2-1-1 from a landline or a cell phone.
"I was encouraged to see that many residents have been checking on their neighbors," said Mayor Slay. "I hope every able-bodied resident checks on at least one elderly or disabled friend, neighbor, or family member. Go to their house, and make sure their air conditioner is on and working properly."
The City of St. Louis has had three heat related deaths so far this year. In two instances, air conditioners were available but not turned on. In the third instance, the air conditioner was on but was not working properly.
"This is a long, high-heat event," said Health Director Pam Walker. "We must remain vigilant until the National Weather Service removes the warning. The communication and systems that we have in place are saving lives - but residents need to continue take precautions and check on elderly or disabled friends, family members, and neighbors."
The Health Director also reminds residents that the effects of heat are cumulative. The excessive heat warning has been continued through 10:00 p.m. on Saturday, July 7th.
City residents can register on the Functional Needs Registry or can register fellow City residents on the Registry by calling Kelli McCurdy at 314-657-1676.