Seniors hope shutdown won't affect meals
PORT ALLEN - Seniors in Port Allen are hoping the government shutdown won't lead to a cut in meals they get from senior centers.
The Capital Area Agency on Aging feeds seniors daily balanced meals in 10 parishes around Baton Rouge. They also provide transportation to meal sites and deliver meals to homebound elderly residents.
Executive Director Linda Beauvais says the agency always plans ahead, especially during hurricane season, so they'll have enough money to feed seniors for the rest of October.
"At least we didn't have to go into a panic immediately. We know that this month is good, and we have this whole month to plan and get ready and be prepared for next month if it comes to that," she said.
If the government shutdown lingers on toward November, cuts would have to be made. Beauvais says transportation to meal sites would have to be the first to go, and meals would be affected if the shutdown goes on to December.
"We would probably not do the meal sites at all. I don't know how many of our homebound seniors we would be able to serve. We would certainly try to get to the ones who need us the most," said Beauvais.
Seniors we spoke with say they're hoping for the best and don't want their daily meals to go away.
"I'm very optimistic that we're not going to come to that. I think the federal government is going to work out something. The powers that be in Washington are going to finally work this thing out together," said Louise Green.
"I'm hoping it won't do that, because a lot of these people, this is the only meal they get a day. They may have snacks at home or something like that, you know, but that's it," said Dollie Bradley.
The Capital Area Agency on Aging serves over 70,000 people each year.
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