Old folks homes group wants to meet minister

Social Development Minister Camille Robinson-Regis. -
Social Development Minister Camille Robinson-Regis. -

THE TT Residential Care Association (TTRCA), which represents private homes for the elderly, was glad for protective gear sent by the Ministry of Health but now wishes to meet Minister of Social Development Camille Robinson-Regis over funding.

In a recent statement, TTRCA president Caroline Ruiz said Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh had kept his promise to supply gear.

"On May 7, I received 170 goggles, 3,000 disposable masks, 340 boxes of gloves but no thermometers and disinfectants as promised. We also received 1,000 reusable masks from FEEL." The TTRCA is now packaging the items for members to get in an equitable manner.

While the gear had reached later than she had wished, she thanked the Health Ministry and hailed home-owners for protecting their residents from infection.

However, Ruiz alleged private homes were excluded from social support from the Ministry of Social Development.

"We are also grappling to survive this period on the road to recovery post covid19."

Ruiz said while the Ministry of Social Development had paid 18 homes for socially-displaced clients under the Community Care Programme, such support did not extend to all homes under the TTRCA's membership.

"Some homes are facing closure due to non-payment of fees, while others are coping with relatives who cannot meet the commitment to pay for their loved ones, neither can they care for them. They have nowhere to go. What should we do at this time? It is a challenge."

Ruiz said the Ministry of Social Development has spent money on Riverside Plaza to house street dwellers, but this facility is underutilised, especially as it is a temporary shelter that houses people only on a voluntary basis.

"If they are really serious with treating with the socially-displaced, home-owners are quite capable to offer care and permanent, homely environments for the said individuals, whereby they can be integrated back into society. It is what we do best on a daily basis."

She hoped the minister or her permanent secretary would contact the TTRCA.


"Old folks homes group wants to meet minister"

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