Senior safety a concern after recent murders
Safety for seniors in Macon is high priority for Neighborhood Watch Coordinator Judy Gordon.
"Our safety measures for seniors and the general public is ongoing, it's ... 12 months a year 365 days," Gordon said.
Gordon meets with groups of seniors once a month to advise them on how to steer clear of scams, identity theft, and physical harm, which is why the recent murder of 87-year-old Macon woman Christine Cook is hard to think about.
Cook was allegedly killed bu the man who cut her lawn, a convicted felon with a lengthy rap sheet. Gordon says that while it may not be easy to spot a criminal it's better to be safe than sorry.
"Be aware, if you see someone in your neighborhood that you're not familiar with, and you don't feel comfortable, give the police a call," Gordon said.
Jean Govani, the Executive Director of the Blair House, a local senior living center, says grown children also play a big role in keeping their parents safe.
"Let the children take over setting up service providers, and being there, so that the opportunity, for someone to come into the home, isn't there," Govani said.
Govani also says when seniors become too trusting of strangers, bad things can happen. When an older person begins to rely on others for help with meals, medication, and locking and unlocking windows and doors, their children should seriously consider a change in living arrangements.
"That point when we worry about those issues, it might be better to have them come into another type of a setting," Govani said.
Gordon says doing Internet background checks on service providers are also important, but she understands many seniors aren't computer savvy, that's another reason she says watching your neighbors, and erring on the side of caution is so important.
"If you feel like you need to call 100 times, call 100 times, do whatever it takes to be prepared and keep yourself safe," Gordon said.