Monday, November 02, 2009

When It's Time to Stop Driving

One of the most ticklish situations adult children face is getting mom or dad to give up the keys to the car. This is also one of the most difficult situations seniors face when they decide to age in place. People who live in assisted living can take a van provided by the complex or snag rides with friends. But when you live alone, giving up the car means giving up a huge amount of independence. Yet, not giving up the car can mean bad accidents with tragic outcomes.

That's why the transportation committee of Aging in Place in Darien has been actively working on finding transportation alternatives for seniors. We now have a half-price taxi voucher program, coordinated out of Darien Social Services. And we are working with the bus system, Gallivant (a van for seniors and disabled) and the Red Cross to keep figuring out ways to make transportation easier to get. Members of churches and other houses of worship usually provide rides to services and to other events or to medical appointments. The problem is that the senior needs to pick up the phone and ask for the ride.

Below is a link to a very good story that was in the New York Times about taking away a car from a dad who did not belong behind the wheel. It's worthwhile reading.

Car Thief
Published: November 1, 2009
When your (elderly) father won’t give you the keys.
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/01/magazine/01lives-t.html

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