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Monroe County Sheriff Institutes Plan To Check On Elderly Residents

Posted by Allie Martin | August 06, 2012 / 04:46pm | Local News
MONROE COUNTY, MISS. (WCBI) - Robbi Strawbridge has lived in this quiet, Amory neighborhood since  1999.  Two years ago, things got tough around her home, when her  husband of more than 50 years contracted a debilitating illness.

Earlier this year he passed away.  Although Robbi shares her large  home with a longtime family friend, she often felt vulnerable and  afraid.

"It's different when  you lose your spouse, it's different, some of my  family are out of town," Strawbridge said.

Monroe County Sheriff Cecil Cantrell wanted to do something to help  elderly residents and those with special needs, so he has come up  with a program that allows his office to check on residents like Robbi.

"We want to make those people feel like they are safe that they do  have an extended family here at the sheriff's department that they can  count on," Sheriff Cantrell said.

The Elderly Check In Program is simple.  Those who want to sign up  call the sheriff's office and give their name, address and phone  number.  They will also need to give a trusted friend or relative a  spare key.  The sheriff's office will need that person's name and  phone number as well.  Then, each day, a phone call is made.

If there is no answer, a second call is made, and the contact person  is also notified and asked to meet an officer at the elderly  residents' home.

"We want to have a contact for someone that knows these people that  may have a  key to let us in. Maybe they went to the grocery store,  shopping or something," he said.

If it is a life threatening situation or a medical emergency,  authorities are on the scene.

Robbi was one of the first to sign up and says the daily phone call is  reassuring.

"I think this program is wonderful.  It gives you a breath of relief  to know that you have someone out there who cares," Strawbridge said.

"We're going to make it work, I don't care how many people get on it,  we're going to make it work," Sheriff Cantrell said.

Friday was the first day people could be put on the list for the phone  check in program.  The sheriff wants to get the word out, he plans to  ask churches to let their members know about the initiative.  Sheriff  Cantrell says he doesn't want anyone who could benefit from the  service to be left out. 

If you are an elderly resident , or have special needs and live in Monroe County, or you know someone who needs to be placed on the call list, that number is 662 369 2468.
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