How heat puts a vulnerable community at risk.

How heat puts a vulnerable community at risk.

  • Seniors can be at serious risk, as heat and dehydration already stress the body due to age and chronic medical conditions or become more vulnerable due to certain medications.
  • Most people in Worcester can expect eight times the number of 90-plus degree days a year when they reach retirement, compared to the number of hot days when they were children.

WORCESTER – Calvin Gray is homeless, and one of his favorite places to stay quiet is under a tree that provides shade on Harding Street.

That’s where Gray was this week, carrying his personal belongings, and he wasn’t alone. Other homeless adults joined him under the tree, with a jug of ice water to share among the group.

“It’s hot,” 50-year-old Gray said, noting that he lost a lot of weight due to the heat, and this is what worries him because he suffers from diabetes and congenital heart disease. Gray is one of hundreds of homeless people in Worcester, with 493 people in the city experiencing homelessness in June, according to the Central Massachusetts Housing Alliance.

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