14 October 1981
Commission on Aging Wants Its ’82 Money To Be Given to Squad
Princeton’s Joint Commission on Aging has voted to make the supreme sacrifice: don’t provide any money for us in the 1982 budget, the Commission is asking Borough and Township governments; instead, use the money for the First Aid and Rescue Squad.
In a letter to Borough officials, the Commission urges the Borough to reject a fee-for-service proposal, and fund the Squad wholly, providing money to continue the day crew at its present level of staffing.
The Commission also suggests a survey of voters, “as to whether a superior Squad is more important than fiscal economies.” The survey might also be directed at Squad volunteers, the Commission suggests, asking how they would feel if the Squad were to charge a fee for its services
“We are apprehensive that a pay-as- you-go concept could have disastrous consequences.” the letter says. “First of all. it would most probably be a financial
“With almost a completely volunteer staff, 11,000 people last year received first-class help for about $100 each in cost to the Squad. No quasi-commercial outfit could supply anywhere near such quality aid for more than double that cost.”
Commenting on the needs of its elderly constituents, the Commission says that the “Vial of Life” program is linked to a professional Squad staff. (In this program, a vial with important medical information. is kept in the refrigerator in the homes of elderly or chronically ill people.)
“If only a stretcher-bearer is available with no trained specialist able to use such information on the spot, the Vial program would lose its major purpose.” the Commission letter states
“Even assuming that most rescue victims could pay their way or even part of the cost, the Borough would find itself paying for the many poor and Indigent and at an inflated price for inferior services.”
The letter also suggests that it would be hard to recruit volunteers for “a commercial outfit.” The letter was signed by the Commission’s chairman. Martin P. Lombardo.