According to Customer Services Manager, Jeannette Thomas there was a significant response to the company’s Free Pass promotion in which disconnected customers were offered free reconnection.
“In excess of 2000 customers country-wide responded to our Free Pass promotion,” stated Thomas; adding that “there are some customers who refuse to make contact with our customer services offices to settle their arrears. Hence we are forced to execute our annual disconnection campaign to remove the services of those customers who simply refuse to pay for their service.”
To encourage customers to make payments before the annual country-wide disconnection exercise, GWI launched the Free Pass promotion, intensified its community outreach programme Community Connect, sent payment reminder letters to customers and businesses, executed public announcements in rural communities, sent SMS/text messages to in excess of 200, 000 customers and invested in a public awareness campaign via radio, television, newspapers and Internet-based media.
GWI has employed additional staff members to function in the utility’s new Enforcement Unit which will monitor communities country-wide for customers who have illegally reconnected their service or engaged in tampering. The GWI Enforcement Teams will also remove the entire service of customers who have received more than two (2) warnings regarding their outstanding water service charges.
“Despite written correspondences and our Free Pass promotion, some customers have made no effort to pay their outstanding debt,” stated the Customer Services Manager who added that “we have no other choice but to remove the entire service of these customers. These customers will have to reapply for a new service and pay the full cost of installation. This is a last resort since the company must recover the cost of providing water service country-wide.”
The Customer Services Manager also warned that due to the amount of customers scheduled for disconnection, GWI cannot guarantee that disconnected customers will be reconnected in time for the Holidays.
“If customers are disconnected in December, due to the large disconnection list, GWI cannot guarantee that every customer will be reconnected in time for Christmas Day.”
For customers with large debt, GWI Wallet-friendly Payment Plans are available.