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Old 05-09-2012, 12:41 AM
 
Location: California
4,556 posts, read 5,473,472 times
Reputation: 9613

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
What she needs is a tax break or maybe the Church will help her out.
Heaven forbid we, aas a society should care foor the elderly
Exactly.

We used to work at our local soup kitchen where people could get food, a place to sleep, help with job searches, limited medical treatment, and clothing. Many services require your SS number for fraud prevention. Our local agency has services for women and children, and a separate area for men. One of the clients worked for moving companies and then between gigs, he lived at the shelter to save money to build his house. Also, many of the shelters are now connected, or at least share client info, so if you apply at one, the services you receive will be able to be tracked to where ever you go next. We left as some of the volunteers were, shall we say, competing for donated food and clothing with the actual clients. I heard one volunteer had a grocery store in his garage!

In this valley, with so many imports getting the best paying jobs while Americans are struggling, makes me wonder what has happened to the collective morals of America.
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Old 05-09-2012, 06:17 AM
 
9,198 posts, read 9,278,507 times
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Quote:
Exactly.

We used to work at our local soup kitchen where people could get food, a place to sleep, help with job searches, limited medical treatment, and clothing. Many services require your SS number for fraud prevention. Our local agency has services for women and children, and a separate area for men. One of the clients worked for moving companies and then between gigs, he lived at the shelter to save money to build his house. Also, many of the shelters are now connected, or at least share client info, so if you apply at one, the services you receive will be able to be tracked to where ever you go next. We left as some of the volunteers were, shall we say, competing for donated food and clothing with the actual clients. I heard one volunteer had a grocery store in his garage!

In this valley, with so many imports getting the best paying jobs while Americans are struggling, makes me wonder what has happened to the collective morals of America.
I agree. Private charity has its place. I tend to think that these situations involving older, impoverished people tend to be exceptions rather than the rule. I would think the number of people falling into this category is not so huge that it needs an entirely new government program to deal with it. Even if it did, the budget situation with government is so dire today that we can't afford such a program.

A destitute person of any age does have a number of private options they can look at. I will give some examples:

1. Health care. Check out whether a Community Health Center exists in your area. I used to serve on a board of directors for one in my hometown. The center will provide medical care based on a sliding scale that is dependent on the income of the patient. Very often, cheap medications can be obtained directly from the CHC at no cost or low cost because some pharmaceutical companies give them to the CHC for this purpose. Flu shots and pneumonia shots can be obtained for free.

2. Food. Most churches operate a food pantry, bishop's storehouse, or community garden. These churches will typically serve and support non-members as well as their own. It does require that you get up, look around, and ask questions. You might also go to a Senior Center. Very often lunch is provided at no cost, or low cost to all the people who come to the Senior Center. Often a courtesy bus or shuttle is available that will pick seniors up at their home and transport them to the Senior Center and back at no cost. I'm bringing up the government here, but I would suspect a destitute elderly person would be eligible for Food Stamps.

3. Housing. This is probably the most difficult area. However, I would begin by contacting churches again. Very often they do have leads on places where people can get very low cost housing.

4. Clothing. "Good Will" stores are operated by groups like the Salvation Army, Deseret Industries, etc. Used clothing can be obtained at a very low cost for the truly needy.
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Old 05-09-2012, 06:40 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,744,100 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heidi60 View Post
Exactly.

We used to work at our local soup kitchen where people could get food, a place to sleep, help with job searches, limited medical treatment, and clothing. Many services require your SS number for fraud prevention. Our local agency has services for women and children, and a separate area for men. One of the clients worked for moving companies and then between gigs, he lived at the shelter to save money to build his house. Also, many of the shelters are now connected, or at least share client info, so if you apply at one, the services you receive will be able to be tracked to where ever you go next. We left as some of the volunteers were, shall we say, competing for donated food and clothing with the actual clients. I heard one volunteer had a grocery store in his garage!

In this valley, with so many imports getting the best paying jobs while Americans are struggling, makes me wonder what has happened to the collective morals of America.
Excellent post. It's good to hear stories from people who have seen things from the inside. However, I do have a little personal quibble which has nothing to do with the substance of your post, and that is calling the people who availed themselves of your services "clients". To me (and I admit this is old-fashioned), a client is someone who pays someone else for services. I am a client of my CPA, to whom I pay a fee once a year to prepare and file my state and federal income tax forms. If I were to go looking for a handout, I would not consider myself a "client" and would not be expected to be called one.

I admit that your usage has become more the norm than mine, but I still don't like it. We live in an age of euphemisms, of which "client" is but one example. I fight against euphemisms by trying not to use them. I still say "mentally retarded", as I just can't stand "developmentally disabled", for example. I mourn the passing of clear-speaking; euphemisms to me represent an effort to delude ourselves that there are no negatives in life.
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Old 05-09-2012, 07:40 AM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,133 posts, read 20,829,122 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heidi60 View Post
Exactly.

We used to work at our local soup kitchen where people could get food, a place to sleep, help with job searches, limited medical treatment, and clothing. Many services require your SS number for fraud prevention. Our local agency has services for women and children, and a separate area for men. One of the clients worked for moving companies and then between gigs, he lived at the shelter to save money to build his house. Also, many of the shelters are now connected, or at least share client info, so if you apply at one, the services you receive will be able to be tracked to where ever you go next. We left as some of the volunteers were, shall we say, competing for donated food and clothing with the actual clients. I heard one volunteer had a grocery store in his garage!

In this valley, with so many imports getting the best paying jobs while Americans are struggling, makes me wonder what has happened to the collective morals of America.
Most civilized countries have come to the realization that Health Care and Pensions for the elderly are one of the main reaasons for government to exist. Even Iceland, which has been Bankupt for years, provides Healthcare, Social Security and a better Education System than the US.
Perhaps they do not value greed over common sense
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Old 05-09-2012, 08:39 AM
 
Location: Northern panhandle WV
3,007 posts, read 2,173,172 times
Reputation: 6696
Escourt Rider,
I understand about the pet peeves, I also hate political correctness taken to extremes, for instance I am disabled or handicapped, and fine with those terms, now if you were to say gimp that would be too far the other way, while physically challenged seems unneccessary to me.
In the Case in point here, if you come to my back door looking for a hand out then no you are not a client, however if I run an organization specifically to help the poor and you come to avail yourself of my orgainizations services then, calling you a client or patron etc. seems proper, I would not in that context call refer to the beggars that my orgainzation services. The terms used can be relevant to the context.
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:15 AM
 
Location: California
4,556 posts, read 5,473,472 times
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Many of the people we fed had been caught in the vicious teeth of political abuse because they needed mental or physical health care. Some of them were down right violent, while others touched my heart and will be in my heart as long as it beats. I call them clients out of basic human respect as they are in need of services provided by an organization or agency. No one really cares whether I agree with their life choices so passing judgement doesn't help the situation. They need what they need, and if can help without causing harm to my own family, then my personal philosophy is to reach out and remember the Desiderata. There will always be greater and lesser...

Now, when some of my richer relatives try to scheme to get into our limited retirement funds, I call them beggars and other terms I don't want to put on CD out of respect for who ever may read this.

As much as I support helping those in real need I'm also the first to report a fraud as there are some who come here to drain our tax dollars and abuse the system. It is not always easy to want to help but not allow some to consume everything out of greed.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:15 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,744,100 times
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To Heidi60: I understand your point of view and it is clear you have a good and compassionate heart. My point was less about passing judgement than about the use of euphemisms. I am not in favor of applying derogatory terms wholesale to large groups of people, and I already knew that some people who are in need of free services are there through no fault of their own. But none of that changes my objection to calling them clients.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:42 PM
Status: "Support the Mining Law of 1872" (set 11 days ago)
 
Location: Cody, WY
9,583 posts, read 10,930,257 times
Reputation: 19216
I have a seventy-two year old woman as a client who works as a phone sex operator. She's fortunate in that she has a strong and young voice. But she created her own good fortune when she decided to do what was necessary to live a better life than she otherwise could. She's not able to get out easily and she doesn't need to.

There are people making good money on ebay; there are people selling as many pies as they can bake at farmers' markets. All these folks seem a lot happier than the bunches I've seen in pictures lined up at soup kitchens.
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Old 05-09-2012, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,745 posts, read 4,219,341 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
To Heidi60: I understand your point of view and it is clear you have a good and compassionate heart. My point was less about passing judgement than about the use of euphemisms. I am not in favor of applying derogatory terms wholesale to large groups of people, and I already knew that some people who are in need of free services are there through no fault of their own. But none of that changes my objection to calling them clients.
You might want to check out the definition of client. It is the professional relationship that defines a client, not whether one is paying or not. All of my clients are "clients." The law identifies them as clients and provides them the same level of protection whether they're paying or not. Same with accountant, private investigator, architect, etc.

Don't know about food banks, etc. That would be stretching it a little.
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Old 05-09-2012, 07:36 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,744,100 times
Reputation: 32304
Quote:
Originally Posted by lenora View Post
You might want to check out the definition of client. It is the professional relationship that defines a client, not whether one is paying or not. All of my clients are "clients." The law identifies them as clients and provides them the same level of protection whether they're paying or not. Same with accountant, private investigator, architect, etc.

Don't know about food banks, etc. That would be stretching it a little.
Word usage evolves with time. My dictionary, like you wrote, says nothing about payment, but it is sort of implied: client (noun):
1. One for whom professional services are rendered.
2. A customer or patron.
3. One dependent on the patronage of another.

I have no reason to doubt you about the law identifying people receiving the services of an attorney as clients. Public defenders come to mind in that regard. I still retain my mental concept of what a client is, however.
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