A historic winter storm hit Texas. Millions were left without power in subfreezing temperatures for days, and many are still going without essential services. Seniors and the medically vulnerable have been among the hardest hit.
At AARP, we are deeply concerned about what’s happened during this crisis, and we are calling for action, answers and accountability. Read more about it here. We also want to help Texans get access to reliable information regarding this weather event, along with resources pertaining to utility bills and incidents of fraud or scams.
The following are links to sites that may be helpful:
● The Public Utility Commission of Texas. If you receive an exceptionally high utility bill, file a complaint with the PUC at this site here or enter this address in your web browser: https://www.puc.texas.gov/consumer/complaint/Complaint.aspx
● If you suspect a fraud or scam, consider filing a consumer complaint with the Texas Attorney General at this site or by calling 1-800-621-0508.
● If you or a loved one suspect you are a victim of a fraud or scam or would like to learn more about consumer protection, reach out to the AARP Fraud Watch Network or by calling 877-908-3360.
● Feeding Texas has a list of food banks that can be searched by ZIP code. Find it here.
● FEMA. Federal emergency aid is available to the state of Texas. For more information, please call 1-800-621-3362 or visit: https://www.fema.gov/disaster/3554.
● The American Red Cross: You can find a list of open shelters on the Red Cross website. Find it here. For more information from the Red Cross, please call 1-800-733-2767 or visit: https://www.redcross.org/about-us/news-and-events/news/2021/winter-weather-can-be-dangerous-how-to-stay-safe.html.
● Lone Star Legal Aid: To learn more about your legal rights after a disaster, find information from Lone Star Legal Aid, a nonprofit organization. Visit their Disaster Relief page here.
● The Texas Tribune has identified guides on how to get help in several communities, including Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, and elsewhere. Read here for more information.
For localized information and resources, visit:
● Brownsville / Cameron County
● Fort Worth
● Houston / Harris County
● San Antonio