COVID-19 Resources for Philadelphia

Last updated April 7, 2020

This City of Philadelphia COVID-19 webpage is providing updated information and guidance related to COVID-19 in Philadelphia for residents, business owners, event producers, and health care providers.

  • To receive text updates from the City of Philadelphia about COVID-19, text COVIDPHL to 888-777.
  • The Greater Philadelphia Coronavirus Helpline is open 24/7 at 800-722-7112.

City Provides Update on COVID-19 for Monday, April 6, 2020

The City is regularly updating its list of Essential City Services that are open during the COVID-19 crisis.

Urgent care services

The City of Philadelphia provides a list of urgent care locations and phone numbers currently operating during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please call the location before going to an office as hours are subject to change.

Behavioral health services

Please check the Community Behavioral Health (CBH) website daily for updates on mental health and substance use providers’ service hours and telehealth options. Philadelphia residents seeking mental health or substance use disorder services should call CBH member services at 888-545-2600.

  • Pennsylvania Statewide Support and Referral Hotline is available at 1-855-284-2494, For TTY, dial 724-631-5600.
  • The PA Crisis Text Line is available 24/7 by texting “PA” to 741741. Services are confidential and free.
  • The Delaware County Crisis Connections Team Warm Line is available at 855-464-9342. The Warm Line is staffed by Certified Peer Specialists to support individuals with mental health and emotional challenges.

Resources for workers impacted by COVID-19

Unemployment compensation

If you lost your job due to COVID-19 you may be eligible for unemployment compensation You can file a claim for unemployment benefits online. Work search and work registration requirements are temporary waived for unemployment compensation claimants. You may be eligible for unemployment benefits if:

  • Your employer temporarily closes or goes out of business because of COVID-19.
  • Your employer reduces your hours because of COVID-19.
  • You have been told not to work because your employer feels you might get or spread COVID-19.
  • You have been told to quarantine or self-isolate, or live/work in a county under government-recommended mitigation efforts.

Work Search and Work Registration requirements for people currently receiving are temporarily waived for all unemployment compensation claimants. Claimants are not required to prove they have applied or searched for a new job to maintain their unemployment compensation benefits.

Employment opportunities

Pennsylvania Career Link Philadelphia offers information on current employment opportunities and assistance with applying by email info@pacareerlinkphl.org or by phone at (833) 750-5627.

Free tax preparation

Free, virtual tax preparation is available for low-income families through the Campaign for Working Families at GetYourRefund.org. Once there, verify your identity, answer some required questions, and upload your tax documents. For issues, email virtualvita@cwfphilly.org or visit cwfphilly.org.

Resources for people in recovery

Sexual health services

If you need sexually transmitted disease (STD)/sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing, please call 215-685-6575 or 215-685-6571. Health Center 1 is providing modified services during COVID-19. If you are experiencing symptoms of a sexually transmitted infection, a medical professional will be available to discuss an evaluation plan and/or determine next steps.

Resources for people experiencing intimate partner violence or abuse

Resources for pregnant and breastfeeding women

The City of Philadelphia offers questions and answers for pregnant women, and families with infants and children.

Breastfeeding services and supplies:

  • You can reach out to your insurance provider to request a breast pump delivered to your home.
  • Pacify is A free mobile app that provides on-demand access to lactation specialists right from your smartphone. Get the app by:
    • Searching “Pacify” in the Apple Store or Google Play
    • Entering the enrollment code PHILLY at signup for FREE 24/7 access

Baby supplies:

  • The Philadelphia Interfaith Hospitality Network provides food and diapers to families in need. Call 215-247-4663 and press 8# to speak to a staff person. Hours of operation are Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10am-5pm and Saturdays 10am-2pm.
  • Catholic Social Services provides emergency food and diapers through several locations in the City.

Women, Infants & Children (WIC)

To find the nearest WIC office in Philadelphia, go to http://northwic.org/locations/ or call the central WIC office at 215-978-6100. All offices are open for eWIC card loading from 7 am to 1 pm Monday through Thursday. Check the WIC Facebook page for new developments @PhiladelphiaWICProgram.

Resources for parents with young children

Resources for youth, young adults, and people who work with youth

Philadelphia COVID-19 Youth Service Dashboard provides crowd-sourced information for young people, their families, and service providers about which youth-serving public service programs are open and accessible during the novel coronavirus crisis in Philadelphia.

Resources for people experiencing homelessness

The City of Philadelphia states that housing will be available to those who are homeless or facing imminent homelessness during the COVID-19 crisis. To access services:

  • Call 215-232-1984 to request street outreach.
  • Visit the City’s Emergency Housing webpage.

Resources for immigrants

Resources for older adults

  • The Philadelphia Senior Law Center office is currently closed; however all of their staff are working remotely. Individuals can access services by calling 215-988-1242.

Food assistance

  • Free food assistance for Philadelphia families: Beginning March 30, Philadelphia residents impacted by the COVID-19 crisis can pick up a free box of food for their household at locations throughout the City.
    • Food sites are open Mondays and Thursdays 10am-12pm.
    • Residents can pick up one box per household. Supplies should last 5 days.
    • Residents do not need to present an ID or proof of income for eligibility.
  • Philadelphia schools are serving meals to students eligible for free or reduced lunch.
    • 49 school districts are open from 9am-12pm on Mondays and Thursdays.
    • Each child will receive 6 meals.
    • 6 Philadelphia Housing Authority community centers are open from 9am-12pm Monday through Friday.
    • Any child is eligible at any site. No ID is required.
  • The following resources provide information on locating discount food, food pantries, and food banks:

Public benefits and income supports

If you have lost your job, or have had a reduction in your hours, you may be eligible for SNAP (“food stamp”), Medicaid (“Medical Assistance”), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (“TANF” or “cash assistance”) or heating bill assistance (LIHEAP). You can apply for benefits through Compass or by calling Benephilly at 844-848-4376. The County Assistance Offices are currently closed to the public, but they are accepting applications. If you already receive these benefits, but you’ve lost income, you may be eligible for an increase in SNAP or TANF. Because the County Assistance Offices are closed to the public, you should submit information about a change in income in one of the following ways:

    • Online through Compass
    • Through free mobile app MyCompassPA
    • By calling the Philadelphia Customer Service Center at 215-560-7226 (for Philadelphia residents)

Telephone health insurance enrollment helplines

Housing

Eviction information:

  • On March 13, 2020 the Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA) suspended all evictions for 30 days. Court appointments for residents who have failed to pay will also be postponed. Residents are required to continue to pay rent during the COVID-19 crisis. Additionally, updates from the PHA are available in this Briefing Update from March 13, 2020.
  • The Philadelphia Municipal Court has imposed a two week moratorium on evictions, which began March 16.
  • Philadelphia courts are closed through April 30, 2020, and no legal evictions will proceed until they reopen. If your landlord changes your locks, takes your possessions, or cuts off your utilities, the Tenant Union Representative Network (TURN) provides the following advice:
    • “Call 911 and report an illegal self-help eviction to the police. This is a crime under Philadelphia Code 9-1600 (Prohibition Against Self-Help Eviction Practices).
      • If your landlord is still on site and the illegal eviction is still in progress, an officer may be dispatched to assist you.
      • If your landlord is not still on site, you should make a police report. Make sure you write down the DC number so you can request a copy later.
      • You can ask the police for other assistance, like calling your landlord.
      • You may have to ask to speak with a supervisor if the person you speak with first doesn’t help. Philadelphia Police Directive 3.17 gives them instructions on how to help tenants.
    • File an “Emergency Petition to Restore Possession” with the Court of Common Pleas.
      • From 9am-5pm Monday-Friday, go to the Justice Juanita Kidd Stout Center for Criminal Justice, 1300 Filbert St, Basement Level, to file.
      • All other times, go to City Hall to file with the emergency judge.
      • Bring any proof that you live at your address that you have access to – your lease, ID, utility bills or other mail, rent receipts, etc.
      • You will need to know your landlord or property manager’s name and address in order to file the petition.
    • Call 267-443-2500 for the Tenant Hotline or refer to www.phillytenant.org for more information.
      • There may be a handful of exceptions to the above in rare situations. Please call the Tenant Hotline if you need individualized information.”
  • For housing emergencies, individuals can contact the Philly Tenant Hotline at 215-443-2500.

Beginning March 27, there’s also a federal eviction moratorium for 120 days on the filing of any new evictions against tenants in any type of federally-related subsidized housing, including LIHTC and Housing Choice Voucher Programs (including “Section 8 housing”).

Utilities

There will be no gas, electric, water, or landline phone shutoffs in Philadelphia until at least May 1.

If you have experienced a loss of or reduction in employment, you may qualify for assistance with your utilities bills.

  • PECO has suspended shut offs and is waiving fees through May 1, 2020 due to COVID-19. PECO is also offering assistance programs to individuals facing hardship. Individuals seeking assistance should contact PECO Customer Care as soon as possible by calling 800-494-4000.
  • PGW  is suspending non-payment terminations and will waive new late payment charges until further notice. Regular billing will continue for all customers.
  • The Philadelphia Water Department (PWD)will not shut off water for nonpayment and has suspended all late fees and penalties for water bills. PWD began restoring water for customers who previously had it turned off on March 13. If you still do not have water you should call PWD righ taway at 215-685-6300.
    • If you have lost water or have questions, please call (215) 685-6300 or email waterinfo@phila.gov.
    • If you have a plumbing issue and need to hire a contractor there are no restrictions as plumbers are essential businesses.
    • The Homeowner’s Emergency Loan Program (HELP) offers zero-interest loans for repairs to water service.
  • Comcast is offering new, low-income internet services and two months of free internet in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Additionally, Comcast is offering free wifi through wifi hotspots across the country. During the COVID-19 crisis, Comcast will not disconnect customers’ internet service or assess late fees. Customers must contact Comcast and choose a new billing date at https://www.xfinity.com/myaccount.

Legal services resources

  • The AIDS law Project of Pennsylvania’s Coronavirus Bulletin Board provides up-to-date information on changes to benefits and services.
  • Community Legal Services has temporarily closed their new client phone and online intake process through March 25; however, they are accepting calls for specific matters, including:
    • Landlord tenant cases at 267-443-2500
    • Medicaid at 215-227-2400
    • Homeownership issues, including mortgage and tax foreclosures at 215-334-4663
    • Department of Human Services matters involving children at 215-981-3765.
  • Philadelphia Legal Assistance has closed walk-in intakes through April 30, 2020, but staff are working remotely. To apply for assistance:
    • Call 215-981-3800 Monday through Thursday from 9:30am-12pm for general legal matters or matters related to unemployment compensation, bankruptcy, probate, lawsuit defense, home ownership issues, public benefits, or tax income disputes.
    • Call 215-981-3838 Monday through Thursday 9:30am to 12pm for family law matters.
    • Call 215-334-4663 Monday through Friday 9am-5pm for tax and mortgage foreclosure matters, home ownership issues, mortgage rescue scams, and predatory home buyers.
    • Apply for services online.
  • The Legal Clinic for the Disabled’s office is currently closed; however staff are working remotely Monday through Friday 9am-5pm. Call 215-587-3158 for services.
  • The AIDS Law Project of Pennsylvania‘s staff are working remotely. To access services:
    • Email intake@aidslawpa.org,
    • Call 215-821-7899, or
    • Complete an online intake.
  • Mazzoni Center provides direct no-cost or low-cost legal assistance to low-income and lower-income, underserved LGBTQ populations. To access services:
    • Call 215-563-0657 or
    • Email legalservices@mazzonicenter.org
  • HIAS Pennsylvania provides legal representation to immigrants who meet their eligibility criteria. Call 215-832-0900 Wednesday 9:30am-12pm or Thursday 2pm-4pm to be included on their intake list.
  • Criminal record expungement
    • Community Legal Services is offering virtual assistance to individuals who wish to have their criminal records cleared.
  • Legal self-help materials are available from Community Legal Services for:
  • The Philadelphia Senior Law Center office is currently closed; however all of their staff are working remotely. Individuals can access services by calling 215-988-1242.
  • Philadelphia Bar Association Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources for Civil Legal Aid

Legal information and updates

  • All Philadelphia courts and offices will remain closed until April 1. This includes the Municipal Court and the Court of Common Pleas.  Exceptions to the closure include:
    • “Preliminary Arraignments, Bail Acceptance, and Emergency Protection from Abuse services will continue on a 24/7 basis. Non-Emergency Protection from Abuse petitions secured at Family Court will resume upon the reopening of our courts and offices.
    • Juvenile Detention Hearings and shelter care hearings held pursuant to 42 Pa.C.S. § 6332 will be held by the Court as required under the law.
    • An Emergency Judge will be available from 9am to 5pm and civil emergency filings must be filed in person at the Stout Center. We will designate the location. Civil Emergencies will be limited to health and medical emergencies, public safety and emergency guardianship appointments. During non-business hours, the court will continue to have a designated emergency judge available through the City Hall operator, as usual.
    • All Pretrial Services and Adult Probation and Parole Department client interviews will be suspended for the next two weeks. GAGNON I Hearings and EMU Supervision will continue.
    • Municipal Court will continue to hear video bench warrant hearings for individuals incarcerated in the Philadelphia Prison system.
    • Traffic Division will remain open to retrieve impounded vehicles-3 days per week. We will update the Traffic Court IVR-call center appropriately.”
  • All state courts are closed until April 3.

People with family or friends in jail or prison

Pennsylvania State Prisons

The Pennsylvania DOC has suspended all visits through at least April 10. Only staff, vendors and contractors will be allowed to enter any of the state prisons, pending the results of a screening. The DOC has begun video visitation in place of face-to-face visits.

Philadelphia Jails

Currently, the Philadelphia Department of Prisons has suspended all civilian visitors due to COVID-19.