Every summer, Memphis residents in financial trouble run the risk of heat-related illness and even death. As temperatures rise, so does the energy required to cool a home, and the power costs can be crippling for people already in debt.

Memphis Light, Gas and Water (MLGW) tries to help by not shutting off utilities on the hottest days, and by offering to reconnect utilities for a small fee while deferring the indebted person’s balance.

But getting that information out to people who don’t have power can be difficult. In the meantime, people particularly susceptible to heat-related illness – like the elderly and physically handicapped – can struggle to get to a cooling center or safe residence.

How can you help?


    • If you have power and are running air conditioning in your home this summer, make sure your neighbors know that your home is available if they get too hot.
    • Give elderly and sick neighbors your phone number in case they need to get to a cool place.
    • Regularly check up on handicapped and elderly neighbors to see if they need anything.
    • Refer neighbors without power to MLGW (901-820-7878) and, if needed, help them speak with a representative there to find out what can be done.


If you or someone you know is behind on bills and struggling to cover utility costs, bankruptcy could help you get a fresh start and live with more security. Our bankruptcy attorneys would be glad to assist you. Contact us to discuss your options at no charge.