JIS News

Executive Director of the National Council for Senior Citizens (NCSC), Beverley Hall Taylor has said that plans are in place to develop a national disaster plan for infirmaries and homes for senior citizens across the island.
According to Mrs. Hall Taylor, it is critical that persons who work in these institutions are able to respond quickly in cases of emergency.
“I went to a meeting in the British Virgin Islands in July, where we were looking at ‘elderly in disaster’, and it was highlighted during the meeting how critical it is to have a disaster plan in place for our infirmaries and homes, where our seniors reside,” she pointed out.
Mrs. Hall Taylor who was speaking in an interview with the JIS News recently, at the agency’s headquarters in Kingston, further outlined that the NCSC would be working assiduously with homes and other agencies to develop this plan.
“I am going to be working with administrators of these homes, agencies, and the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) to see how we can formulate this plan. This will assist in times of disaster therefore, workers at these homes will know what to do in the event of a disaster, after and even before,” she emphasized.
Although not stating when the disaster plan is likely to get off the ground, Mrs. Hall Taylor is advising that it will take into consideration all the necessary measures to ensure that seniors will be safe in times of disaster.
“We have not put a timing to this plan. what I can say is that we will be ensuring that all the necessary precautionary measures are included and that in the end senior citizens will be able to access any benefits available, and are also safe,” she added.
Mrs. Hall Taylor said that, while the disaster plan was being drafted, the Council was working diligently to ensure the safety of seniors in the event of a disaster.
“The National Council’s officers are trained in carrying out assessment, and they work closely with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, so in the event of a disaster they will be prepared to assist senior citizens. Our officers are also members of the Parish Disaster team, so in the event of a disaster they will know what to do and who to contact. So while we are developing a disaster plan, things are in place to ensure the safety and security of our seniors,” the NCSC Executive Director said.