Help Homeless New Yorkers Stay Safe During the Heat

The scorching summer weather has arrived a few days early in New York City, with high temperatures forecasted throughout the week. While the heat wave is an inconvenience for many New Yorkers, it can pose significant dangers for the thousands of homeless people living on the streets or in shelters without air-conditioning. Here are some resources to stay cool and safe during the heat wave:

  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
  • Utilize a Drop-In Center during the day or evening, or enter shelter at these locations. It is important to note that homeless individuals and families always have a  right to shelter in New York City regardless of the weather, but there are expanded outreach and intake rules when Code Red is in effect.
  • Call 311 to locate a nearby cooling center. During periods of extreme heat, the City operates free cooling centers in air-conditioned public facilities, with most centers open during the daytime.

Read other tips on staying cool here.

During extreme weather, it is more important than ever that we all look out for our most vulnerable neighbors. If you see a homeless person in need, here are a few ways you can help:

  • Unless you feel unsafe doing so, ask if the person is ok, has someplace to go, or needs help.
  • Provide information about the above resources or the Coalition’s Grand Central Food Program (GCFP), which offers food and assistance 365 days of the year – even during dangerous weather. Click here for a list of stops.
  • Call 311 to let the City know that there is a person in need of emergency shelter. The City partners with nonprofit agencies that will send outreach workers to connect the individual to services.
  • If the person seems to require medical attention, call 911 for emergency assistance.
  • Share this graphic with your friends and family, and spread the word on how to help our neighbors in need: