Se­niors Home still White

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE -

The White House af­ter the storm.

Vic­to­ria Vanier Stanstead Peo­ple right across the coun­try were shocked, last week, when they heard that the thir­teen se­niors liv­ing at the White House Res­i­dence, in Stanstead, were told that the res­i­dence was clos­ing and that they had two days to find new liv­ing quar­ters. Rel­a­tives of the res­i­dents, many of whom have lived at the White House for years, were busy pack­ing up their be­long­ings, last Fri­day.

The owner, Richard Bilodeau, has stated that he closed the se­niors res­i­dence be­cause of fi­nan­cial dif­fi­cul-

ties. The $440,000 mort­gage on the busi­ness was taken at the Caisse Des­jardins de Stanstead, reg­is­tered on July 5th, 2006. As we went to press yes­ter­day, and ac­cord­ing to the records at the Stanstead Reg­istry of­fice, no ac­tions had been taken against the mort­gage holder. When asked when the Caisse Des­jardins de Stanstead knew that the White House would be clos­ing, Gen­eral Di­rec­tor Mario Scal­lon said: “At the same time as ev­ery­one else.” He also said that, for rea­sons of con­fi­den­tial­ity, he couldn’t make any other com­ments. How­ever, he did add that com­mer­cial ac­counts are han­dled at the Cen­tre Entreprise of the Ma­gog branch of the Caisse Des­jardins.

The Cen­tre de santé et ser­vices so­ci­aux de

Mem­phrem­a­gog (CSSSM) was also only in­formed of the clo­sure on March 2nd, step­ping in to pro­vide psy­cho-so­cial ser­vices for the res­i­dents and their fam­i­lies to help deal with the stress of the sit­u­a­tion and to help find new homes for the thir­teen se­niors.

For­tu­nately, eight of the se­niors were able to find new homes all un­der the same roof: at Place San­born, in Ayer’s Cliff. “We had some rooms avail­able so we were able to take in eight res­i­dents. Some of them are fa­mil­iar with some of our res­i­dents,” com­mented Is­abelle Vanasse who works at Place San­born. When asked how the new res­i­dents were ad­just­ing to the sud­den move, she added: “They’re do­ing OK.”

The pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment has been work­ing on a new ver­sion of the cer­ti­fi­ca­tion mea­sures for se­niors res­i­dences since Septem­ber and, af­ter the White House in­ci­dent, will make it even “tighter”. “There will be stricter penal­ties against the own­ers of res­i­dences and stricter mea­sures to be­come cer­ti­fied,” ex­plained Louise Quintin, the press at­taché to the Min­is­ter of so­cial ser­vices, Do­minique Vien. The min­istry is ex­pect­ing to de­posit this new amend­ment to the ex­ist­ing law at Par­lia­ment be­tween now and the end of the present session. “Our main concern is that peo­ple are treated well and with re­spect,” added Ms. Quintin.

When Ron­ald Ma­heu, the pres­i­dent of the Mem­phrem­a­gog branch of the AQDR ( As­so­ci­a­tion Que­be­coise de de­fense des droits des per­son­nes re­traitées) was told what hap­pened to the res­i­dents of the White House, he was in­cred­u­lous. “I be­lieve this is a case of el­der abuse. It is a real shame. But I’m happy that eight of the res­i­dents have found homes at Place San­born; that is a good res­i­dence,” said Mr. Ma­heu.

pho­tos Stanstead Jour­nal

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