AUSTIN (KXAN) — Dozens of protesters showed up to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas headquarters in Austin Sunday after a winter storm left thousands without heat and power in Central Texas.

Activists and community members made calls for ERCOT and electric companies to pay restitution for what they call negligence during the winter storms two weeks ago.

“It’s not just a mild inconvenience to have these things be shorted or outed, it’s a literal cessation of our life and for some people it’s a death sentence,” said Mustafa Alnomanni, a teacher from Houston who protested Sunday.

Organizers said they want the companies to cancel any electricity debts from the storm. They also want the companies to pay for damages to people’s homes and compensate people for any lost wages because of it.

At an ERCOT Board Meeting Wednesday, ERCOT said the state was only minutes away from a blackout of the entire system the morning of Feb. 15.

Five unaffiliated directors of the council, who live out of state, also resigned Wednesday.

An ERCOT spokesperson told KXAN in an emailed statement that they look forward to working with the Texas Legislature and thanked the board members for their service.