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Members of a New Brunswick family say they're being unnecessarily ripped apart days before Christmas. Herbert Goodine, 91, was removed Monday from the special-care home where he has lived with Audrey Goodine, 89, his wife of 69 years.
The move a week before Christmas follows an assessment by the Department of Social Development, which determined Goodine needed more care than the home he was living in could provide. Goodine's daughter, Dianne Phillips, said she's outraged her parents were separated after only a few days' notice and just before the holidays.
"And at this time of year, the way things took place, I feel that is abuse to seniors," said Phillips. "It's emotional abuse. It might not be physical, but I do believe it is emotional."
In an email to CBC News, a spokesperson said the Department of Social Development was aware of the situation and the family's concerns, but couldn't comment on the details of this case.
"If it's determined that a senior needs additional care or that their safety is potentially in jeopardy, the department works with the resident and family members to facilitate a move to an appropriate home," wrote Anne Mooers.
"Individuals who require a higher level of care than what can be provided in special care homes are moved to where their needs can be more appropriately met, such as in a nursing home or a memory care home."
Despite being separated in the days leading up to Christmas, the Goodines will spend Christmas Day together at their daughter's home in Fredericton.
May they have a good Christmas despite the sudden situation they find themselves in .
The former farmer from Tilley shed a tear hugging his daughter after the relocation, but he tried to keep a sense of of humour when asked about his wife. "Well, if nothing happens to her, it'll be good," he said, "because she'll be rid of me for a little while." Phillips said social workers assessed her father last week and decided he needed more care than was offered at Victoria Villa.
originally posted by: vonclod
But after a recent assessment of Herbert’s condition, officials decided his dementia had progressed to a point where he needs a higher level of care and the home could no longer accommodate him.
She says a resident at Level 2 would need a little bit of supervision, while a resident who has progressed beyond that level would require more supervision. “Once a resident is beyond our care, [the Department of Social Development] reassesses that resident to determine what level they are. At that point, I have to follow those rules and regulations set by the government. In fact, it’s against the law for me not to follow those rules,” Eagan said.
Herbert says it’s been difficult moving from a group setting to a private room. He says the last 69 years have been the “best” and it’s all because of his wife, who he fell in love with the moment he saw her.
The couple will reunite for Christmas at their daughter’s home in Fredericton. However, visits after that will be sparse.