Local News

Power Cut Off At Assisted Living Center Displaces Residents

Posted October 20, 2004

— Residents at the New Hope Living Center in Durham County have been displaced after the center's electricity was turned off, and officials are now trying to revoke the owner's license.

This incident is the latest in a string of complaints and problems at the center, according to the Durham County Department of Social Services, which has been collecting complaints about the center for years

Several complaints to the department in the past few months now have officials trying to revoke the owner's license.

"Not qualified staff in terms of having a supervisor in charge, medication management, food service," said Gloria Green, of the Department of Social Services.

Residents say at times the place was literally a dump.

"The man was so cheap he wouldn't have the Dumpsters dumped," said James Marshall, a former resident.

According to social services, the center has been cited for incidents that include having a kitchen full of flies and mice, not having enough food and not paying their employees on time. At one point a resident had to take a bus to the emergency room because there was no one at the center to drive him, according to records from social services.

Efforts to contact New Hope's owner Eric Lewis for comment were unsuccessful.

Timeka Toomer's father-in-law is one of the 15 residents who were moved out of the New Hope Living Center. She says she's heartbroken.

"You depend on if you have to put your loved one in a home, that the management will provide the service and take care of the family member," Toomer said.

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