Tom Saunders, President of SPRYE, tells MyRye.com readers you are 86'ing seniors by cutting Rye's #76 bus service.
To the Editor:
Public transportation serves a critical need of the elderly. Research shows that mobility is the biggest single problem facing older Americans in suburban and rural settings. Surrendering one's driver's license is a life-changing event that links directly to seniors' second-ranking complaint- isolation. The ill effect of transport cutbacks is doubled when you consider that not only can the old and infirm not get out of their homes; deliverers of critical services like home health care can't get in. It's noteworthy that this occurs at the same time that Medicare authorities are seeking to save money by shifting delivery of care to the home and away from residential treatment facilities.
The #76 bus route stops at Rye's two most significant NORCs (Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities), Blind Brook Lodge and Milton Harbor House. It's an essential link for their residents as well as for commuters and in-home employees.
These cutbacks show a distinct lack of vision when we consider that, in ten short years, 25% of Westchester's population will be over age 60. They may be politically fashionable, but they represent poor public policy.
SPRYE (Staying Put in Rye and Environs)