Crisis Intervention Program (CIP) . 2013-2014 . CIP 101. Qualification Rules, What CIP will and (will not) assist with Is it a working or non-working heating system? Understanding CIP and the Heating Systems they service. Step 1 of CIP Does the caller Qualify?. Qualifying Criteria.
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Crisis Intervention Program (CIP) 2013-2014
CIP 101 Qualification Rules, What CIP will and (will not) assist with Is it a working or non-working heating system? Understanding CIP and the Heating Systems they service • Step 1 of CIP Does the caller Qualify?
Qualifying Criteria • Caller must meet all of the following criteria to qualify for CIP • They must be approved for LEAP – There are absolutely no exceptions to this. • If they have not applied, they will need to apply first. Advise the caller to write CIP at the top of their application and to apply using the same procedures they would if they had a disconnect notice. • Once they apply, they will need to wait 24 hours and call us to see if their application is in the status system • Once they are entered, we should contact the county LEAP office to ensure that they are aware it is a CIP applicant as well and request that they rush the application. (You will have direct numbers to a contact in each county office) • If they are not entered into the system within 24 hours, we should also contact LEAP to see if they can locate and enter the application. They are very good with working with us to get the applications pushed through as quickly as possible once they know it is a CIP applicant. • Once the application is approved, LEAP will notify us using the Support Suite ticketing system* which we can check on often throughout the day. • As soon as we are notified by LEAP that the applicant is approved, we can then contact the applicant and complete the CIP application.
Additional qualifying factors EITHER • The caller’s main source of heat must be non working or not functioning properly** Main Source of Heat OR • A caller relies on wood or propane for heat and severe weather (such as snow blocking roadways), is preventing them from getting fuel, wood etc. for heat. Snow or Severe Weather Crisis
Is the heating system really non-working? • As a general Rule, CIP was designed to assist in NO HEAT situations. This is why it is deemed a Crisis Intervention. The caller should generally be in a crisis situation because they do not have heat. But there are some exceptions and this is not always a case of black and white. At times, you will need to use your best judgment and you are always provided with support from staff in situations when you are unsure. • Going into our second season of CIP, we have learned that most callers that are not in a no-heat situation, but still have a problem with their heating system will often call and explain their situation. When we tell them CIP is for no-heat only, they simply call a few days later and ‘suddenly’ have a no-heat situation. Now that we have learned this, we are slightly more liberal with who qualifies. And asking several questions will generally help you to determine who is and isn’t really in a crisis situation. Obviously, there is no way to provide every example or cover every situation, but following are a few examples of situations we have encountered and how we have handled them. Remember, while there are some black and white rules, CIP is handled in a case by case manner and that is possibly the most difficult part of the program.
Example 1. The caller’s heater is not working and they think it’s because the pilot light is out. CIP pays a trip charge that varies between $150 and $250 for each visit to a home even if no work needs to be done or they just light a pilot light. In this situation, we generally ask if they have a neighbor, family member etc. that may be able to light it for them. If they don’t, or someone has tried and it won’t light, we’ll schedule them for a CIP visit. Example 2. The caller has 2 furnaces and one is not working, but the other is. If they still have heat in the main living space, we will not schedule them for CIP. For instance, if the second furnace that is not working is in the basement, or back portion of the house, they are not in a no heat situation. But if the furnace that is non working is in the main living space, i.e. kitchen, living area etc., we’ll schedule them for CIP. Example 3. The caller’s furnace is working but periodically shuts off. This is where some exploratory questions will be helpful. Are they able to immediately re-light it? Does it kick back on pretty quickly on it’s own? Does it go out for hours at a time? What is the average temperature in the home? If the furnace is only going out once in awhile or it kicks off but they are immediately able to turn it back on, they probably don’t need CIP until they are in a situation where they are without heat for long periods of time. However, if the heater is off most of the time, or the average home temperature is below ‘normal’ (at least 65-70 degrees), then we should schedule them for CIP. Again, most situations will be a judgment call. And if you are unsure, you should ask in chat and we are happy to help. After several calls, you’ll generally be able to tell if the caller is being honest, or if your questions are leading them to answer in a specific way etc.
Understanding Heating Systems and CIP Most of you are probably aware of furnaces and how they work. You do not have to know a lot about heating systems to take CIP calls, and some things you will learn along the way, but there are a few things we have learned over the last year. Below are some of the heating systems we have encountered and a brief description: Furnace Furnaces generally use some type of fuel and an electric motor to heat the fuel and a blower to force the air into the home. The most common fuel source for modern furnaces is natural gas; other common fuel sources include propane, oil, coaland wood. In some cases electricity is all that is used to heat the air and the furnace uses no fuel source. Boiler Boilers work much like furnaces and can vary in how they look. Some look like furnaces and some like water heaters. The difference is that boilers use water rather than fuel to create a vapor or steam and that heated air is pushed through a blower to heat the home. If someone is not sure if they have a boiler or furnace, the most common test is: • Do they have a filter? If so, it’s a furnace • Do they have one thermostat or several? If they have several, so that they can set the temperature differently in different rooms, it is probably a boiler. Wood Burning Stove Wood burning stoves don’t require much description. Generally, they sit in the middle or a corner of the room and work like a closed fireplace burning wood or wood pellets and then forcing the heat through an opening at the top or ventilated sides without allowing smoke into the room. Electric or Space Heaters Most people only use electric space heaters as a temporary source of heat or in a very small space. Generally, these are not safe for long term heat. Solar Heating Systems These systems use solar energy to heat tubes of water that run through the walls of the house and under the floors. That heat radiates into the home keeping it warm.
Main source of Heat System Just as we need to with LEAP, with CIP you will need to determine a caller’s main source of heat system. This also needs to be compared with the information in status. We’ll go into the details of that later but for now, let’s talk about a main source of heat system. Some callers are not using their main source of heat. For example: Joe has a furnace but it hasn’t worked since he bought his house, so he’s been using a wood burning stove. His wood burning stove is not working so he has called CIP. His LEAP application will reflect wood as his main source of heat, but we’ll need to note that he does have a furnace that is simply not working. Chances are, rather than fix a wood burning stove, CIP will repair or replace his furnace. Another example: Jane’s wood burning stove has been putting out smoke so she’s been using space heaters for some time. CIP will not provide her with more space heaters, rather, they will most likely fix her wood burning stove as that is her main source of heat system. Her LEAP application will probably reflect electricity as her main source of heat since she’s been using the electric space heaters.
Can CIP fix my heater? CIP is a 2 part program. Of course, the main goal is to repair or replace non-working systems. However, the long term goal is to make the heating system as efficient as possible, saving both the client and LEAP heating cost in the long term. What does that mean for the CIP caller? On each call, we want to access the callers situation. The script is very thorough in gathering details of the heating system itself and again, your best judgment will also assist. For instance, they will not simply replace one furnace for another because it is more energy efficient, but they will, if they see fit, replace a very old propane system with a new natural gas furnace if the cost to repair the old system would be higher, or the long term fuel cost would be dramatically more efficient. Additionally, if the caller has a furnace that hasn’t worked in a long time and they have been using a wood burning stove, generally, CIP will not fix the wood burning stove, rather they will fix or replace the furnace as it is a much more efficient and safe heating system. Also, CIP will generally install a furnace where someone is using temporary heat like space heaters. ** We never want to try to assess and tell a caller what CIP will and will not do. The contractor that makes the initial visit will be able to determine the best course of action.