Poland Village launches senior check-in program
By Jordyn Grzelewski
Joe Mazur would frequently see stories about elderly people suffering a medical emergency at home, alone, with no one to help them.
The news stories got Mazur, who recently retired from village council, thinking about ways to prevent those incidents from happening in the village.
“Periodically, I look on the news or in the paper and somebody died, and is laying there for a couple of days,” he said. “Maybe they could have been saved if we had a system to check.”
Now, his idea is being put into action.
The village is launching a senior check-in program. Those who enroll will receive periodic check-ins from village police officers.
Mazur said he believes there is a need for this service, especially because of the village’s aging population.
The program is geared toward elderly or disabled people who live alone and don’t have someone who can regularly check up on them. For many, their relatives might live out of town and unable to drop by in person.
The program also might provide some relief to out-of-town family members concerned about the well-being of their loved one.
Marion Gillette, a village resident who helped Mazur finalize the program, pointed out it also could be beneficial to emergency responders.
The information enrollees are asked to provide would be available to them, making them aware there is a person with special needs at the address to which they’re responding.
“People who are interested in the service for themselves or a family member, they will be asked to give information about the person, the location, what particular problems or issues that has,” explained Gillette.
The form asks for information about the enrollee; contact information for relatives and neighbors; a doctor’s name and phone number; how to access the residence; and when to check in and how often, along with other information.
The program is available to village residents. Poland Township has a similar program in place. For information about that program, contact the township government at 330-757-0733.
Calling the village’s new program Mazur’s “brainchild,” Gillette credited Mazur with thinking of the idea and working to make it happen over the last few years.
Implementation of the senior check-in program marked one of his last actions on council, capping a 20-year tenure. At age 90, Mazur opted not to seek re-election when his term ended in December.
Reflecting on his time serving in village government, Mazur said, “I think we made a lot of progress.”