assistance with bed bugs

Asked September 9, 2014, 12:23 PM EDT

We have a client that is on Social Security Disability and has found out she has bed bugs. She is looking for an agency that could assist her with the physical part of getting ready to have someone get rid of them and hopefully financial assistance as well in Barry county or surrounding counties, or State agencies?. Any suggestions?

Barry County Michigan

1 Response

I contacted Cathy Newkirk, MSU Extension, who has been involved with a bedbug reduction education initiative in Michigan. These are her comments:

The problem is there are very few resources for those who don’t have the money to pay to get rid of them. And it’s even worse for people who don’t have the physical ability to tackle the problem.

1. An agency that could assist her with the physical part of getting ready to have someone get rid of them – That would be someone in Barry County, possibly. I’m not aware of their resources, but maybe Laura Anderson, MSU Extension in Barry County, is?

2. Hopefully financial assistance…in Barry County or surrounding counties or State agencies? There is no state level assistance. My guess is there isn’t county level assistance either, but I don’t know what support might be available in those counties.

There may be some recourse if she rents, if she gets state subsidy from DHS or federal subsidy from HUD. Because those agencies provide funds to the building owner or management company, those individuals are required to keep the building in a healthy, habitable condition. It might be best to have her contact Erik Foster, the medical entomologist at MDCH. He’s really the state bed bug expert and he has dealt with this type of thing before. His phone number is (517) 335-8165 and his email is fostere@michigan.gov.