When I heard the first story about problems at Copper Ridge, I knew it’d turn into a fist fight. Sure enough, as more and more people came forward with their Copper Ridge horror stories, other people felt the need to fight back. They told us of the excellent care their loved ones receive(d) at Copper Ridge. Two women claimed the system and staff at Copper Ridge “couldn’t be any better.” I had trouble with that one since I believe all systems should always endeavour to ‘be better.’ Besides, one of the women who signed the letter doesn’t even live in the Yukon, so really, what does she know?
The next “right hook” I saw came from a local couple whose loved one also had a positive experience at Copper Ridge. It was a great story. Unfortunately, the letter went on to suggest that those unsatisfied with the level of care at Copper Ridge “should consider hiring private care in their own home.” Insensitive? Just a little! Arrogant? Absolutely. Naive? No kidding.
When so many disturbing examples of inadequate care at Copper Ridge something has to be going on. These people had nothing to gain, and in some cases, a lot to lose in speaking out. We’ve heard from family, friends and former staff. They all had different perspectives and almost all acknowledged the staff as being good and caring and doing their best in a bad situation.
I’m not sure why the self-appointed defenders of Copper Ridge felt the need to don their armour. If their loved ones are having a good experience, I’m sure all Yukoners are genuinely happy for them. That doesn’t mean the place is problem-free, that the other revelations are untrue or inaccurate. It certainly doesn’t mean those who are concerned are simply unaware of the inherent difficulties of age and infirmity as those arrogant letters suggest.
So how about the ‘defenders’ put down their gloves? We already know the good parts. It’s a beautiful facility with some excellent staff. Now it’s time to let the whole truth come out - not only for the people living there now and in the future – but for the staff trying hard to care for them.