CITY HALL –At a Stated Meeting held yesterday afternoon, City Council voted to pass legislation sponsored by Council Member Chin, which urges for deeper transparency in the social adult daycare (SADC) system. By requiring the Department for the Aging to create an online database for SADCs, tracking violations issued at any given daycare, and allowing individuals to directly submit their complaints to a DFTA SADC ombudsperson, Intro 1278-A continues the Council’s efforts to address the needs of millions of caregivers across the City.
“Social adult daycares provide a vital service in our City, and this legislation will not only help identify bad actors in the system – but also allow families to make more informed decisions for caregivers and their loved ones,” said Council Member Chin, Chair of the Committee on Aging. “These community assets offer caregivers, a majority of whom are women, a break for a couple of days a week to take care of their own needs. I thank our Speaker for her support throughout the process, the Council staff who worked to move this bill forward, and finally the advocates for their continued input and advocacy on this issue.”
Properly managed social adult daycares provide much-needed respite for caregivers— especially those who are unpaid— by securing a safe environment, direct supervision and personal care for individuals suffering with Alzheimer’s, dementia or other chronic health conditions.
However, as the State made it easier to access these services with minimal regulation and oversight, some unscrupulous providers open programs that endanger vulnerable seniors, threaten the funding of good senior centers and daycares, and open the door to Medicaid fraud. The online database prompted by the legislation would indicate the number of violations issued at a given daycare as well as the outcome of the violation, and would also allow individuals to submit complaints about bad social adult daycares directly to DFTA’s SADC ombudsperson through the electronic system.
“Social Adult Day Care programs are a proven model and critical part in the community-based social service network for seniors and family caregivers,” said Allison Nickerson, Executive Director of LiveOn NY. “LiveOn NY applauds Council Member Chin for her steadfast work to support quality services for older adults in their communities and her continuous efforts to ensure social adult day programs are safe and accessible as we all work together to make New York a better place to age.”
“I’m so pleased to see that the passage of Council Member Margaret Chin’s bill Intro 1278A has passed for oversight to protect our most vulnerable and frail seniors through transparency so that working caregivers can have peace of mind when they need to leave their loved ones in a safe and reputable social adult day care program in New York City,” said Isabel Ching, Executive Director of Hamilton-Madison House.
With a rapidly growing aging population, the SADC database serves as a vital tool in the efforts to create a more age-friendly City. With more access to critical information about social adult daycares, families and caregivers will be better equipped to make decisions about the wellness and care of loved ones living with chronic illness.