On May 1st, New London is launching a helpline for all those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Any resident with questions or in need of food, housing, education or medical assistance should call 860-941-4355.
“New London is the number one most distressed community in the state. Even without a pandemic we have a lot of needs,” said Jeanne Milstein, the director of human services in New London. “We have established the Humanitarian Emergency Lifeline Program (HELP) to help residents access the resources they need.”
In the past two months Milstein, Mayor Mike Passero and other city employees have received countless calls from those seeking food, housing, assistance with internet and domestic violence. The hope is that the helpline will streamline those called requests for help so that those in need can more quickly be connected with the appropriate resources.
“The disparities that existed before coronavirus are even more significant now and all of us are getting calls all the time,” Milstein said. “A lot of people are without jobs and now don’t have the means to get food, pay rent or seek medical care.”
The helpline will be operated by the Human Services Department and will be available in both English and Spanish. All calls will be returned within 24 hours.
In addition to assisting residents during the current crisis, Milstein will be tracking the number and type of requests to better identify some of the larger and more systemic problems in the city.
The issue of internet access has already come to light as parents try to cope with remote education for their children.
“The City is deeply committed to providing information and support to our residents during this extremely challenging time,” Milstein said. “The City is here for you and wants to help.”