Letters to the editor, June 10
June 8, 2012 4:32PM
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Updated: July 11, 2012 6:05AM
Volunteer firefighter’s bad driving gives bad impression
The pickup truck rocketed through the intersection of Sturdy Road and Penna Hill Drive in Valparaiso at 9:30 p.m. The reckless driver was going 25 mph over the posted limit while passing another vehicle at the intersection of the two-lane road. I was preparing to enter the intersection when I noticed the blur of blue dashboard lights a few feet from the front of my vehicle. Had I turned into the intersection, in the path of the reckless volunteer firefighter traveling in the wrong lane, the devastation would have been horrific.
This VFD firefighter lacked the common sense to sound his horn, despite the fact he was in blatant violation of two laws: passing within 200 feet of an intersection and traveling well above the speed limit. He was driving as if immune from citation.
Local law enforcement agencies were made aware of this incident to compel them not to overlook volunteer firefighter who endanger the public. This VFD menace was in his private vehicle en route to the station. The fire chief failed to respond to my complaint in a credible manner, which also reflected poorly on this department.
Take a stand against elder abuse, know the signs
Elder maltreatment is a significant public health problem and this June 15 is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Each year, hundreds of thousands of adults over the age of 60 are abused, neglected or financially exploited. In the U.S. alone, over 500,000 older adults are believed to be abused or neglected each year. These statistics are likely an underestimate because many victims are unable or afraid to tell police, family, or friends about the violence. Every five seconds, an elderly person is abused in the U.S. The health and well-being of our elderly population must be brought to the forefront of societal concerns. We must protect their health, safety and rights and treat them the same way we would hope to be treated ourselves.
There are specific indicators that may help point to a problem: Untreated injuries, bruises, burns, sprains or dislocations, scratches and cuts; sudden changes in behavior, unusual depression and/or withdrawal in social settings; tense relationships/frequent arguments with the caregiver or a caregiver’s refusal to allow visitors; dehydration, unusual weight loss, poor hygiene, untreated health problems, unsafe living conditions; and sudden changes in financial situations — bank account/banking practices, the inclusion of additional names on a victim’s bank signature card, unauthorized withdrawal of the victim’s funds, and abrupt changes in a will or other financial documents.
It is time to reflect on what we are doing as a community to support our elderly. This June, take a stand against elder abuse!
Bill and Tammy Spearson
Owners, Home Helpers