Lehigh Valley

Seniors upset over closing of centers in Easton

Seniors upset over closing of centers in Easton

EASTON, Pa. - Two senior centers in Easton are closing up shop and heading out of town.

Easton Mayor Sal Panto said Northampton County officials decided to close down the only county-funded senior centers within city limits, and open a facility in Forks Township.

A facility in the south side of the city recently closed.

The facility in Center Square will close in the near future, Panto said.

Panto hosted a meeting with concerned senior citizens on Monday afternoon, to address their worries and brainstorm solutions.

"I'm sure we will come up with something," Panto said.

Senior citizens said they will struggle finding convenient transportation to the new center.

"It's inconvenient with the seniors.  They have problems with walking, and their mobility," said Aljetta Broughton, an Easton resident.

Other seniors said they would not even consider going to the new location.

"I have been here my whole life. I am 82-years-old now. Why would I want to move somewhere else?" said Josephine Crist, an Easton resident.

Pa. Rep. Bob Freeman also attended the meeting, and expressed worries about not having a center within walking distance.

"They were a good social setting for seniors, to not be shut in, as well as to have activities and get a hot lunch.  So, we don't want to see a situation arise, where because of the moving of the center to Forks Township, where they don't avail themselves to that opportunity," Freeman said.

Panto and Freeman promised to spend the next three months researching how to open a facility in Easton.

"We are going to do everything we can to try and locate one in the city where the majority of senior citizens live," Panto said.

It's unclear why Northampton County officials want to move the senior center.

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