Phone request for what to tell elderly and intellectually handicapped about Y2K preps from my county-URGENT [Awareness/general] : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

* * * 19990902 Thursday

Subject Line: Phone request for what to tell elderly and intellectually handicapped about Y2K preps from my county-URGENT [Awareness/general]

I responded to a page from a county Y2K committee person, Barb, with the Oakland County (MI) Human Services, District #5 (their telephone number upon request via your e-mail!). Barb had questions about what and how to tell elderly and intellectually handicapped folks about Y2K preps and actions ( i.e., what "hospitals and shelters" to go to and when.)

Barb has Internet access, so off the top of my head I referred her to search for the NAPA Valley and Rogue Valley sites for possible culling of materials.

I'd like to give Barb specific URLs that they could quickly "steal" and get out to their clientele QUICKLY! There's 120 days to go, MAX!

(Barb was astounded {*sigh*} to learn that there are no "public" plans from Emergency Management organizations, that I'm aware of, for setting up and/or announcing "public shelters" when T-Y2K-SHTF.)

If anyone knows of appropriate _personal_ Y2K prep and/or actions materials for the elderly and mentally handicapped, please post them.

I intend to keep in close contact with Barb to provide whatever might be available in the time remaing.


Regards, Bob Mangus

P.S.: The county has 6, relatively independent "districts," each one having their own Y2K committee, starting--YES, THEIR _JUST_ STARTING!--meeting to collaborate about the Y2K issues internally and in respect to servicing their clients!

This is not good news, is it!?!

* * *

-- Robert Mangus (, September 02, 1999


I work with adults with developmental disabilities and we have been dealing with just this subject over the last few weeks and months. We have been holding classes to try to get them prepared, and are trying to find out who among them will go to relatives, stay home, or need shelter come rollover. Our county currently has NO shelters, but is planning (120 days to go) to have some in 4 - 6 population centers in the county. I am no expert, but have been dealing with this for a while. Email me and we can chat and see if there is any more info I can pass along.

-- Linda (, September 02, 1999.

Hello Robert

I know how frustrated you are feeling.

I live in a large Canadian city and work for a local Councillor. Through my research on this board, and the eu board, I was able to prepare a paper which helped my councillor fight for, and get, generators for every police station. We are over 2 million people and the police stations had no generators!

However, I have just discovered that our emergency plan has 200 shelters allocated, all without generators. The set response I get to my question of what if the power goes out across the city is "It won't". Once when I pushed the question I was told "People will die". I just can't seems to get anywhere on this one and time is running out. "People will die" is not my idea of a plan.

There is a lot of ignorance, hubris, apathy and complacency about Y2K. I realize that there is great difficulty to form a plan that can help a city of 2.4 million without power, but shouldn't we try? Shouldn't it be a grass roots effort as well - watching out for vulnerable neighbours such as you mention? Isn't this what emergency preparedness is all about - imagining a worst case scenario and preparing as much as possible for it? It boggles the mind.

-- citygirl (, September 02, 1999.


A few years back we had to evacuate two small towns because of possible floods. We had a "command center" at the ambulance service I worked for with reps from the local bus service. We got lists from all of the homecare agencies of their homebound clients and started calling to notify them and to arrange transport to evacuation centers if needed. We quickly came up short of evacuation centers. I was able to contact old friends in a mountain community who opened their senior center and grange hall for more and I think we "packed" more into the existing shelters. We called almost 1,000 elderly/disabled folks and transported most of them. I was then assigned to go and move the folks. Many of the shelters had no generators, one (a school) had no power and there were already 100+ people there in the gym before the police were able to reach the appropriate folks and say NO MORE. We were packing elderly folks 3 and 4 to an ambulance and hoping for the best.

Overall, my impression was that there is no way a significant event will go well - I guess that is why they are called disasters. This may be a great opportunity to talk to county/state officials about their plans for some of the above tasks - if they have good contingency plans then it might comfort the people most in need.

I have about 200 elderly, home bound clients and they have all received the California OES brochure from me. Deeply, however, I know that there is no way they would all be "taken care of" if there are widespread problems except for the care by their paid caregivers taking pity on them. If they are lucky.

-- Kristi (, September 02, 1999.

My wife works for a home-health agency in Wisconsin. They are questioning/discussing with each client individually where they will or can go if help is needed. There is not a widespread city or health industry plan. Some individual workers have made arrangements to take in the few that have no alternatives.

Maybe not the smoothest plan, but it looks like it'll work --- I don't see counting on the community or govt. If no "plan" exists, this personal intervention/planning is the only way it can work at this late date. Most health care workers really do care and will do whatever they can to help these people.

-- Jon Johnson (, September 02, 1999.

Robert, Check at to see if the OTHER Robert has anything.


-- Chuck, a night driver (, September 02, 1999.

I hope that I'm not being over sensitive, but would it not be wise to differentiate between the older folks? Not every one who is retired should be lumped with the intellectually handicapped. Perhaps what should have preceded "elderly" was the word "frail?"

I am in the elderly category myself, and yet I have been instrumental in disseminating Y2k info, trying to interest civic and church groups. In fact, I was the one who brought the entire matter to the attention of the church board.. Others on our Y2k church committee are also retired. Don't write out an entire group of active elderly people who could be some of our best assets. If they were turned on, they could use their considerable amounts of free time to aid others. They are also a source of knowledge about the way that things were done in the "olden days."

"Frail elderly" usually describes those who need assistance in some way, either full-time or part-time. Some of these people have help which comes to the home. Some live in residential or nursing homes. These are the elderly we should be concerned about. Currently, in our church, we are compiling a list of frail elderly and assigning a buddy for each one.. We are also packing a small box of food & water for these people which might hold them until the buddy can come to help. I see other things that could be done, but the powers that be around here don't catch the vision.

-- LurkerII (, September 02, 1999.

how about the aarp?

-- maggie huntone (, September 02, 1999.

The overwhelmingly largest part of my preps (by effort, at least) is moving my "frail elderly" parents in with me so that they will never (I hope) have to go to a shelter. Shelter life could well be life-threatening to them.

The buddy idea sound great! I scoured the yard sales until I found a red flyer wagon (and also a toboggan in case the roads aren't plowed) which I will use to carry basic supplies (food, water, camp stove) to the elderly in my neighborhood. I won't be able to take them in, but I can at least check up on them and make sure they have a hot meal.

-- Brooks (, September 03, 1999.

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