Hi, my name is ________________. I’m a researcher with Drexel University in Philadelphia. I’m conducting a survey of utility company responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. I’m calling to see if there is someone in your company that could answer a few questions over the phone. The survey takes approximately 5 minutes and our results will be reported in peer-reviewed publications on how COVID-19 is impacting people experiencing energy insecurity. Do you know who would be the best person to speak with?
If ‘yes, I am the person’: Great! Are you able to take the survey now, or is there a better time to call for this?
If yes, but I’m not the person: Great, do you have contact information for the person who could help with the survey?
If no, we don’t do indoor air testing: Do you get calls about indoor air testing, and if you do, who would I speak with about that?
If, ‘I have no idea how to answer this question’: Do you have contact information for someone who might be able to help me.
Calling energy company reps script: Hello, my name is Andrew Rosenthal and I am a researcher at Drexel University studying how the energy sector is responding to COVID-19. I would like to ask some questions regarding your company’s response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Do you have some time?
Question 1 (PECO AND DLC): Your company has suspensions for shut offs and late fees until May 1st. Why was that date chosen? If social distancing continues through May, is your company planning on extending these suspensions further?
Question 1: (other companies): Do you have a date in mind for when shut offs and late fees will resume? Why was there no date given upon the first press release?
Question 2: Have you created additional support programs in response to COVID-19 for those who are unemployed and will struggle to pay their bills when late fees resume?
Question 3: We will most likely see record high amounts of in home electricity use as your customers must now work and socialize from home. Is your company prepared for this and if not, how is it planning for these shifts?
Question 4: Has anyone taken advantage of your rebates during this time? If so, what rebates are they taking advantage of?
Question 5: How will COVID-19 impact your consumption goals for ACT 129?
This is the calling script I used when calling the seven major electric companies in Pennsylvania about COVID-19.
Anonymous, "Utility Company Calling Script", contributed by Andrew Rosenthal, The Energy Rights Project, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 19 April 2020, accessed 26 November 2022. https://energyrights.info/content/utility-company-calling-script