At what point will city, county and/or state agencies step in and force a single, elderly and medically disabled woman who is not able to care for herself and who is currently displaced due to a building fire that destroyed her apartment building, to either accept to move and live in an available/approved Section 8 HUD apartment that is outside the country where her apartment used to be or move to a nursing home?
In this scenario, the woman is 65 and lives off her social security benefits and Section 8 HUD support to pay for all her expenses including the 55-plus community apartment she had lived in for more than a decade prior to the fire in Nov. 2016. In this scenario, the woman has no friends or family living in the state of NY where she is located. The closest adult child lives more than 3,000 miles away and none of this woman’s children are able to provide her the care she needs in their homes. Additionally, the woman is not medically cleared to travel on an airplane and it is unknown what other form of transportation would be suitable to transport the woman from the East to West Coast given her medical condition and poor health. In this scenario, the woman is very adamant about making 100% of the decisions regarding her health and where she lives, and will not accept any reasonable short or long-term solution that is not 100% what she wants. In this scenario, the woman has consistently refused trusted counsel from family, friends, medical professionals and volunteers from helping agencies, etc., who have all tried an infinite amount of times in-person, on the phone, video webcam, etc., to get her to make the right and best choice for herself and the level of care she needs, but all this communication has proved futile for more than two decades.
Since the fire in Nov. 2016, a person and/or organization stepped up and provided her temporary refuge/shelter at a local religious retreat through Dec. 31, 2016, and went as far to extend her stay a week or two, hoping she would have secured new Section 8 HUD approved/funded living accommodations; however, this did not happen, and when she went back into the hospital for medical treatment, her belongings were boxed up and she was told to have someone come and pick them up as they were not going to allow her to come back. Currently, she was released from the hospital to a rehab center; however, this is not fixing the current ongoing situation for this woman. She needs a new place to live. It sounds like a pretty simple process of submitting necessary Section 8 HUD paperwork and finding an approved apartment that meets her needs; however, nothing when it comes to this woman is every easy. She is adamant about staying in the county where she has lived for the better part of the last two decades and out-right refuses to accept to live outside the county, period dot, or inside the county if it means living in a nursing home of any kind, period dot. She will only accept to move and live in an approved Section 8 HUD apartment if it is located in the county where her hospital is located and services. She has and continues to refuse to accept and move outside the county to an approved Section 8 HUD apartment that meets all her needs. She also refuses, regardless of how short or long her stay might be until a Section 8 HUD approved apartment that meets her needs in the county becomes available, to move to any kind of nursing home as she repeatedly states these kind of places is where people go to die and that the cleanliness and professionalism of some of the people who work in them is unacceptable.
In this scenario, her children have no legal grounds/rights to force her to do anything she doesn’t want to, nor do they have the financial ability to pay for such legal services, nor do they want to take such legal actions either as such a trial would likely cause her to go into cardiac arrest and die during the trial due to her current health condition. What actions can city, county or state agencies or medical professionals take to force her to either move to an approved Section 8 HUD apartment outside the county and/or move to a nursing home until a Section 8 HUD approved apartment opens back up in the county where she wants to live? The word “force” is used because to get her to do anything she does not want or like, will require someone to legally “force” her to do it. Surprising enough, the children of the woman had contacted the area hospital and various family law attorneys in the county or adjacent counties where the woman has lived and none of them will return phone calls. Naturally, this posting is a condensed version of the entire story due to website limitations and am appreciative of any dialog you can provide which may shine a light on how this is likely to play out for this woman.