Mayor Brown’s office has begun to utilize another 311-esque tactic to ensure that everyone knows what the drill is when it comes to helping neighbors-in-need. Earlier this morning, handy information flyers began to appear on people’s door handles throughout the city, distributed by the Good Neighbors Network – “individuals who have registered with the City’s volunteer website, and who have joined block club leaders and members, as well as police officers and recruits.”
The colorful notices are meant to provide residents with another way to ask for assistance, in tandem with the 311 line. If neighbors or volunteers see that someone has hung the flyer on a door, with the pink side facing outwards, they know that it’s time to act. Trained volunteers from the Good Neighbors Network will also be monitoring neighborhoods, looking for these pink signals.
Upon seeing the pink signal, neighbors should first call the homeowner or tenant if possible, then call 311 if the situation warrants further help.
Mayor Brown’s team made it clear that, when signaled, “The only people knocking on a resident’s door will be a first responder or a neighbor who has contacted the individual by phone first, upon which time they will talk with residents through a closed door or window.” The team urges residents in need of non-emergency assistance NOT to open their doors to anyone without proper authority, and to always be mindful of current COVID-19 preventative measures.
If a resident wants to call 311 directly, they can still do so. Some people may not feel comfortable indicating they need help with the door hanger, while others may feel that is the best way to let their friends and neighbors know they could use a good neighbor.
Mayor Brown stated, “In difficult times, the City of Buffalo shines and we are going to overcome this crisis by demonstrating compassion, kindness and a resolve to be there for each other. Our ability to be strong for each other will help see us through this challenge and that is why the Good Neighbors Network is going to play a vital role in our response to the COVID-19 emergency.”
The Good Neighbors Network is an ancillary program that works in tandem with the 311 line. Once again, these are merely extra precautions that are in place to help the elderly, infirm, or anyone else that is need of assistance at a time where alternative safety measures are required.
Please keep checking on your most vulnerable neighbors. Infirm, disabled, and isolated individuals need to be checked on regularly. Phone calls, text messages, emails, and social media are the safest ways to connect with family friends and neighbors.
The hierarchy for being as safe as possible begins with posting the pink notices on door handles, along with calling the 311 line. If it appears to be more of an emergency in nature, neighbors are asked to call 911 to request a wellness check.
In closing, Mayor Brown stated, “I want to thank all of the volunteers, block club leaders and members, our City workforce including police and 311 operators, and everyone else that has worked to put the Good Neighbors Network program in place. By working together and being there for each other we are demonstrating how a City of Good Neighbors responds in crisis. I am so proud of the City of Buffalo. God bless us all.”
Anyone who received a door handle flyer is asked to keep it indoors, and only post it (pink side facing out) when in need of neighborly assistance. If no one calls or visits within one day, call 311.