August 12, 2015
St. Louis Police Officers of St. Louis Police Department’s 12th Annual “Summer Cool Down” Luncheon - Not US!
Editor’s Note: Please be advised that the St. Louis Police Department’s 12th annual “Summer Cool Down” Luncheon is not associated with the regional (MO/IL) not-for-profit charity Cooldownstlouis.org, which for the past 15 years continues to encourage seniors and disabled people to use as a primary cooling source – an air-conditioner and not a box fan. Our “Turn On the Air,” and “Check On Your Neighbors” have been the rallying cry to ensure that seniors have air-conditioning first and most importantly and that their central air or A/C window units are in working condition.
According to CDC, fans should never be used as a primary cooling device. “Using an electric fan when it’s hot can actually increase your body’s heat stress," said Pam Walker, Cooldownstlouis.org, vice chair of Health and Safety. "You may still feel a cooling sensation as the fan’s breeze evaporates your sweat, but increases in hot-air circulation and sweat evaporation can actually speed up heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion."
Of particular concern is this statement from a recent SLMPD media advisory: “To assist those who do not have air conditioning or who are choosing not to use air conditioning due to financial constraints, box fans will be given to senior citizens in need at the luncheon and during the meal delivery service,”
We are grateful that the Police Officers from the City of St. Louis are providing much needed free meals to at least 150 seniors and lifting their spirits. But what is always needed is educating our seniors on the importance of keeping their energy efficient air-conditioners, properly maintained, and turned on during these deadly St. Louis summer days.
We encourage the St. Louis Police Department to help us educate seniors by handing out our Cooling Card, which provides resources to those seniors with utility and A/Cs issues. As well as, refer seniors to us who my feel financial constraints so we can help them keep their air conditioners on or get an air conditioner if they need one. We appreciate Chief Sam Dotson joining Cooldownstlouis.org as a new board member and look forward to working with him as we reach out to educate seniors about how to keep safe in the heat.
Over the years, we have formed successful partnerships aimed to keep seniors and disabled cool and safe during the hot summer months. Cooldownstlouis.org with the help of Ameren Missouri; and drop-offs to area Vatterott Colleges which continuously accepts from the general public donations of new or slightly used A/Cs by contacting us at cooldownstlouis.org.
So far this summer more than 850 A/Cs have been donated and distributed throughout the St. Louis region and about 800 air conditioners were ENERGY STAR®-certified units, which meet the strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy, and cost approximately 75 cents per day to operate.
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