RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Come July 1st, the Wake County sheriff’s senior well check program will be no more. Sheriff Gerald Baker announced he was cutting the program last week. It was created by the previous sheriff to check on senior citizens who live alone and don’t have family nearby, but other local law enforcement agencies have since come out to promote similar programs.
68-year-old Connie Price comes to the Rolesville Diner every day for lunch. Price has called Rolesville home for more than 20 years. The retired state trooper lives alone.
“All the old people need to be looked after because they done pulled their time and did their job so we need somebody to kind of help them along,” said Price.
He doesn’t have any family nearby to check up on him. His daughter moved away last year.
“She lives in Burlington, North Carolina now, about an hour and a half away so she calls, but she can’t come as quick as she used to,” Price said.
Price tumbled down his stairs right before his daughter moved. Luckily, his neighbor found him, but it shook him up.
“I was bruised and I thought right then and now what’s gonna happen when my daughter moves to Burlington and there ain’t nobody.”
Last week, Wake County Sheriff Gerald Baker announced his plans to get rid of the senior well check program.
“I don’t agree with it,” said Price. “I think he should’ve kept it. That was a good deal to look after us old people, but he canceled it so we need to do something.”
The Rolesville Police Department has the telephone reassurance program. The free service is available to seniors and adults with disabilities. A trained representative calls to check in. If there’s no answer, an emergency responder comes by. Police Chief Orlando Soto says they are now making it easier for seniors to apply online and on the phone.
CBS 17 asked the chief if this had anything to do with the sheriff’s decision. Soto would not go on camera, but he sent us this statement, “The Rolesville Police Department has a great working relationship with all agencies within Wake County, including the Wake County Sheriff’s Office. Our decision to promote this program was an independent decision, which was made solely on the needs of our community. It is our hope that this program allows our department to continue fostering relationships with stakeholders in our community, to allow Rolesville to remain a town that is safe to live, work, and play.”
“They get a chance to get out and let the old people know that they care and that’s all they want is to know that somebody cares about them,” Price said.
Price plans to sign up for Rolesville’s program.
“You can fall in your yard, fall in your house, fall in the shower,” said Price. “I mean, who’s gonna come in and find ya?”
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