CHANGING THE PERCEPTION OF SENIOR LIVING
I took a volunteer home the other day, which something I do almost daily. I picked her up at 9 a.m. and dropped her off around 1 p.m. Usually, I back into her driveway, which puts the passenger side door right next to her house door. That day, everything was different. As I backed up, I realized the door to her house was wide open. The door jam was splintered and she was out of the car in a flash; I couldn’t hold her back. Not wanting to let her go inside alone, I checked on the security of the house….A fifty five year old, holding the only weapon I could find, a cane. In my head I was hoping the perpetrator was gone, which thankfully he or she was. They rifled through her clothing, finding items that had value primarily to the owner. They opened up treasured jewelry boxes and found stashed silver. They invaded her peace of mind and took away memories of family and joy from decades past.
I say this not to tell you in some salacious way about this person. Rather, I see this as a warning to not be complacent. Bank safes are there for a reason. There are measures that can be taken to make a house less attractive to rob. Move long-term parked cars around. Add motion-activated lights. Talk to your neighbors and find out what the strengths and weaknesses are within your block. If a neighbor has an excess of cars, invite them to park in your driveway instead of on the street while you are away. Do your best to keep strangers guessing.
Unfortunately, seniors are easy targets. New technologies can be used to help protect them, but they are beneficial only if used properly. Doing so will give our parents security in their golden years.