Community Board 9 held its second monthly Senior Connected meeting on Wednesday, April 26 at its CB 9 offices.
The program allows senior citizens and those suffering from disabilities – who may not be able to come out to the general board meetings – to learn what’s going on in their community.
Attendees receive minutes from each committee meeting and general board meeting that occurred during the previous month.
Linda Brown, the chair of Senior Connected, said she saw a need for this exchange of information.
“[The senior citizen and disabled population] cannot come out at night to attend our community board meeting and there’s no other venue or place that they can go to get the same information everyone else is afforded,” said Brown.
“Here they can get the same information, hear the same things we hear and it’s in the daytime,” said Brown.
In addition to providing seniors with information about what’s going on in their neighborhoods, community members are also able to speak to representatives from elected officials and local organizations.
During the Wednesday, April 26 meeting, representatives of Senator Jeff Klein, Assemblyman Marcos Crespos, Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda and the 43rd Precinct Community Council were all in attendance.
Each spoke about upcoming events in the community.
Each meeting will also feature a topic that affects senior citizens.
Wednesday’s topic was about scamming and senior safety.
Ellen Kolodney, an elder abuse specialist with the Bronx District Attorney’s office, and NYPD community affairs police officers explained which scams seniors should be aware of.
Kolodney told the attendees to never give out their social security number to strangers.
In addition, she stressed that senior citizens must be also wary of their own family members.
Kolodney said it is possible for a granddaughter or grandson to take advantage of their grandparents kindness and have them co-sign for a car that grandchild has no intention of paying off.
In addition, there are instances where strangers call a senior’s home and act as if they are a grandchild in distress in order to steal money.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” said Kolodney.
At the end of the meetings, seniors are allowed to ask questions of the representatives in attendance.
Francis Bost-Quick, a Bronx resident for 50-plus years, said having a program such as Senior Connected is “very vital.”
“I think it’s a place where you can say what you have to say without feeling uncomfortable,” Bost-Quick added. “I’ll come back; it was a good experience.”
Barbara A. Johnson, who’s lived in the CB 9 area for 40-plus years, said she doesn’t go to the general board meetings due to other obligations and this is easier for her.
“Also if you want to have other people involved and encourage them to come – especially seniors – they’re more likely to come out in the daytime than in the night time,” said Johnson.
Brown said the first meeting, which took place on March 23, had approximately 67 members and filled the CB 9 meeting room.
Each Senior Connected Meeting is held on the fourth Wednesday of each month and runs from 10 to 11 a.m.