Sunday, May 3, 2015

Closed Dining hall at the Veterans home?

I got 4 calls this evening asking about a nasty rumor that is going on at the home. 2 were from residents at the home.

Rumor has it that as of 1 June 2015, the main dining hall, located just south of the main entrance to the veterans home, will become a closed dining hall as of 1 June 2015, available ONLY to residents of the home.

Currently Staff members, Volunteers who work long shifts that qualify, veteran's family members and visitors, and Visitors to the home are able to purchase a meal. They do this by entering the dining hall and purchase a number of meal tokens from one of 2 machines available there. Then they go through the "chow line" and pay for their meal with the tokens.

1 person told me that the homes kitchen license does not cover the general public. And that since these people are not members, they are considered to be the general public. Therefore they will not be allowed to purchase meals after 31 May 2015.

THIS is not a good idea. And if implemented, a call to our state legislatures to take action will be required.

Many family members drive long distances to visit veterans. Some ladies who are married to vets, come to the home and spend all day with their husbands, paying for meals. If they are forced to have to either "brown bag it" or leave campus to go find meals, this will make things very difficult for some, and all but impossible for others who rely on public transportation to get to and from the home.

Also, volunteers might end up not wanting to spend long hours at the home, unless secure food storage space is made available.

Enforcing a policy of a closed dining facility will only create more problems for the home, rather than solve any.

Update: We have learned that the Veterans home was NOT supposed to be able to sell meals to non residents. This has been a law for a long time that was overlooked. It is now being enforced.
However, the home has had a budget problem with meals. And its hard to calculate how much food and stuff will be required for non residents who sometimes, not always, eat at the homes dining facilities.

Part of this problem is the on going issue with how the main dining hall is ran, and how some veterans manage to eat 2 or 3 meals at each meal time. This has been an issue for several years, with suggestions on how to fix it offered by residents, ignored by the staff.

The home can once again, offer meals to visitors, guests and staff if it apples for a proper license, which they are discussing and may not do.

Update: Don't think the home is willing to get the license to be able to sell meals. So when family members come for the holidays, they will have to brown bag it. 

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