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Department Of Local Government Requests Probe Into Golden Age Home Allegations

t is with grave concern and regret that the Department of Local Government (DLG) and the Board of Supervision note the contents and allegations concerning the Golden Age Home in the cover story of today’s Sunday Gleaner, April 3.
Consequent on these allegations, the Minister with responsibility for Local Government, Robert Montague has requested the Chairman of the Golden Age Home Board through its Administrator, Major Frank McCaulsky to submit and interim report relative to the allegations pending a Board decision.
In addition, further efforts are being made to address the allegations as the Minister has also directed the Board of the Golden Age Home to convene an Extra-Ordinary Board meeting as soon as possible.
Meanwhile Minister Montague with the same indignation and abhorrence he displayed at the Portland Infirmary during a tour that revealed less than ideal conditions more than a year ago; has similarly expressed great concern at the current allegations and has requested that a probe and speedy action be taken to “get to the bottom of the issue and the requisite measures and sanctions be apportioned to any guilty party having a role, should the allegations be proven factual.”
The Minister has also unreservedly expressed regret and is apologizing to the families, guardians and loved ones of the affected residents vowing to “let the chips fall where they may” once the facts have been unearthed and should they give rise to the allegations.
The Golden Age Home which is a limited liability company formed in 1982 in the wake of the Eventide Home fire tragedy in 1980, currently houses over 400 residents.

Notwithstanding the troubling images depicted in the supporting photographs of the article, the DLG wishes to place on record that that these images do not reflect the level of quality delivery of care administered daily; and every effort is being made through the Board of Supervision which has oversight responsibility for the island’s outdoor and indoor poor across the island’s fourteen infirmaries to improve the operational efficiencies and level of care to the residents entrusted in their care. One such intervention is a series of certificate programmes for poor relief administrators. Last week, some twenty three poor relief officers were awarded certificates of achievement under this poor relief administration programme.