By Stephen Tool, MCIN Staff

Sheriff Stewart Handte is worried about some of the senior citizens in Hawthorne. Handte is concerned that seniors who live alone and don’t have someone regularly checking on them can suffer serious consequences from a simple household accident.

To this end, Handte contacted Mike James at the Senior Citizens Center to devise a plan.

“What I want to do is implement an action plan for seniors that would be initiated by the Sheriff’s Department with assistance from the Senior Center,” Handte said.

“We would put together a spreadsheet with each senior’s information—name, address emergency information, pertinent medication information. It’s great if seniors have someone to check on them, but for those who don’t, we can fill the gap,” Handte said. “On the last part of the spreadsheet, we can ask if they would like the department to check on them.”

Handte considers the proposed program a proactive way to assist seniors.

He hopes to present the program at the Senior Center as soon as possible. Handte also wants to give seniors the opportunity to sign up at the sheriff’s office.

Handte says he realizes many seniors have a Lifeline bracelet, but the bracelet is not 100 percent effective. “What if a senior falls down and is unconscious; How can they activate the bracelet?” he said.

Handte concluded, “This is all a part of proactive community police work. This will help seniors know that we care enough to check up on them; they’re the foundation block of this county.”