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State Senator Paul Doyle: Your Voice

November 22, 2016

Capitol address
Legislative Office Building
Room 3900
Hartford, CT 06106-1591

E-mail me here

On the Web

Capitol: 860-240-0475
Toll-free: 1-800-842-1420

Helping Your Neighbors

Thanksgiving table
Thursday is Thanksgiving Day. You may recall the history of this national holiday began in 1621 when the Plymouth colonists--who were on the brink of starvation and decimated by disease--were befriended by Native Americans who taught them how to cultivate corn, extract sap from maple trees, catch fish and avoid poisonous plants. After the Pilgrims' first successful harvest, a three-day feast was held between the colonists and the Wampanoag Indians. But it wasn't until 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed that a national Thanksgiving Day should be held each November.

Food is a central part of Thanksgiving Day, and is a central part of Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year's Day. But not everyone can afford to enjoy a meal with friends and family during the holidays, or any day. In Connecticut, it is estimated that about one in eight households--12 percent of our population--are 'food insecure,' meaning they have a reduced quality, variety, or desirability of food in their diet. Children are affected, too.

Please take a moment to think of your neighbors and of those less fortunate than you. You can visit the Connecticut Food Bank website to find a local food pantry near you that is accepting food or cash donations, or is in need of volunteers.

Winter Space Heater & Fireplace Safety Tips

fireplace fireThe U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that more than 25,000 residential fires occur every year due to the misuse of space heaters, resulting in more than 300 deaths. In addition, major causes of fires related to fireplace misuse are caused by overloading the fireplace, damage to the fireplace such as missing bricks, obstructed flues and ignition of nearby combustibles.

I would like to share the following safety tips that you can use this winter to not only stay worm, but stay safe when using your space heater and fireplace:

  • Only purchase newer model heaters that have all of the current safety features. Make sure the heater carries the Underwriter's Laboratory (UL) label;
  • Choose a thermostatically controlled heater, because they avoid wasted energy of overheating a room;
  • Select a heater of the proper size for the room you wish to heat; and
  • Locate the heater on a level surface away from foot traffic. Be especially careful to keep children and pets away from the heater.

Tips for your fireplace:

  • Inspect the fireplace to be sure that it has adequate protective linings and that the chimney is clear and in good repair;
  • Do not overload the fireplace. Large fires can lead to overheating of wall or roof materials, particularly if the fireplace is constructed of metal;
  • Keep flammable materials such as carpets, pillows, furniture or papers away from the fireplace; and
  • Make sure that the fire is out completely before retiring for the night or when leaving the house.

For more information about how you can help to reduce space heater and fireplace fire hazards, visit the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

I wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving!


You're receiving this newsletter because you either opted in via e-mail or on my website, or you've been in touch with me or my office regarding an issue or issues of importance to you.

My mailing address is:
Senator Paul Doyle, Legislative Office Building, Room 3900, Hartford, Connecticut 06106
Capitol telephone: 860-240-0475, or Toll-free: 1-800-842-1420

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