By Phil Orlandella
Vowing to stop a potential proposal by Partners/Spaulding to relocate seniors living in the North End Senior Home on Fulton Street, close to 200 residents and family members filled the hall at the Nazzaro Community Center to express their total opposition to the move by Partners who apparently hold the deed to the facility.
Reportedly when the facility was open 19 years ago, the building located on Boston Redevelopment Authority (BRA) land and when it was purchased by Partners there was a document stipulated that apparently stated that the building under the conditions would remain for senior usage.
Partners has apparently notified each of the families that have family currently residing in the home by phone and offered them a move to Brighton or any senior home of their choice.
Residents told the President of Spaulding David Storto, who attended the public meeting, called for by families, that they felt this was a done deal for profit and that a Herald story was the only reason families were notified. Storto denied this.
Storto responded the reason for the move was for Partners to purchase the senior home in Brighton, renovate the structure and relocate the North End seniors to a much better facility. He also noted that there are only fifteen seniors located at the local home and there were once 190 beds with 139 of them being used. These numbers indicate it a loss of revenue.
In order for Partners to complete their plan to purchase the Brighton facility, Partners must gain approval by Massachusetts Health and Hospitals and the State, possibly making them key players in the purchase.
Storto reported to a suggestion to renovate the local home by claiming in order to do the necessary renovations, Partners will have to relocate everyone anyway.
State Representative Aaron Michlewitz angry with Partners said, “This move is unacceptable and should have been handled in a better way.” He told Partners and residents that he will be doing everything possible to keep an active senior home in the North End.
“These are our families, friends and neighbors and together we are going to fight for those that made this community the true neighborhood it is,” Michlewitz said.
The Representative is currently in contact with Mayor Walsh, Councilor LaMattina and Senator Boncore to address this relocation effort.
Held as part of the North End/Waterfront Neighborhood Council (NEWNC) monthly meeting numerous people expressed their opposition to the proposal but were not pleased with the answers or willingness by Partners to change their plans in any way, shape or form.
They clearly indicated it was a done deal for profit. They clearly indicated plans will be vigorously fought until their families would remain in the North End.
George Mendoza said, “If you take this away from the North End, then where do we go when it’s our turn.” One resident yelled out, “to Brighton”.
John Pagliuca said, “I visit my mother every day and it’s important to me that I continue to do so for me and my mother.”
The ability to be able to visit their family members on a regular basis was clearly expressed throughout the meeting.
Anger, disappointment, distrust, concerns and emotions echoed throughout the meeting.
Marie Simboli said, “This is our neighborhood nursing home and we are prepared to picket, sign petitions, write letters and do anything possible to make sure our seniors remain in the North End.”
Flyers are already in place in businesses and community facilities and a petition is circulating throughout the neighborhood.