Letters to the Editor

How about some praise for Hebrew Home?


To the editor:

(re: “Protect single-family homes,” March 30)

In the last issue of The Riverdale Press, sandwiched between a timely op-ed by Comptroller Scott Stringer on the growing needs of New York City’s aging communities, and a fascinating article on the collaborative effort between the Hebrew Home at Riverdale and the College of Mount Saint Vincent on continuing education for older adults, was what I found to be a disappointing letter to the editor, which in my opinion, unfairly criticized the Hebrew Home.

As a Riverdale resident for more than 70 years, and a volunteer at the Hebrew Home, Mr. Epstein’s letter disregards the longstanding community commitment of the Home that I have the pleasure of seeing firsthand each week. He unfairly disparages a non-profit institution that has helped thousands of senior citizens remain healthy and age with dignity every day.

The opportunity for seniors to learn with college students and remain engaged with the world is one very evident example of the Home’s compassionate mission.

We need to see more efforts by organizations to accommodate modern senior living, and to provide innovative programming, rather than allow a small group of residents to stymie these much-needed services.

I see how tirelessly the staff work and how much they give of themselves to create a happy and healthy environment for the residents.

So in that spirit, I support the Hebrew Home’s growth (both literally and figuratively) in Riverdale, and commend them for their innumerable positive contributions to our community.



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Having money is not a reason to flout zoning laws.

Saturday, April 15
Myra Fasner

Marie Dimitriadis' comment on the Hebrew Home and the "small group of residents" who are opposed to the Home's massive building project is totally misplaced. The group of residents, including myself, are actually in the thousands and they are not opposing the good work or expanding programs that the Hebrew Home is planning for seniors. No one in this group has ever disparaged the mission or work or the HH, despite the fact that the HH continually buses in seniors who are half awake or asleep to the Community Board No. 8 and other meetings, as well as their employees, to show how wonderful the HH is. Those of us who are opposing the physical expansion of the Hebrew Home in its most recent proposal are opposing its USE OF LAND THAT IS PROTECTED AS PRESERVED BY ZONING REGULATIONS WE FOUGHT LONG AND HARD FOR. Again, we are OPPOSED TO LAND USE ONLY. We are not opposed to the HH expanding, just not on land in Riverdale that will destroy the beauty, tranquility of the area and its quality of life. If the HH is successful in breaking these zoning restrictions, it will open up other protected areas in the City of New York to such building, which will also destroy other protected areas, of which we have so few left. The only beneficiaries of breaking these zoning regulations would be the Hebrew Home (and later other land holders) and the builders.

Although we are not opposing the proposal for the reason that follows, I feel it is important for Marie and the others who support the HH because of its "good work", need to know that the Hebrew Home proposes to build on this land huge high rise condos for the wealthy poor since nursing homes (for which most residents are placed by medicaid) are failing and are going out of business. The continuing care community that the HH proposes to build in place of its nursing home will cost a $750K-$1.M entry fee per unit plus monthly service costs to the HH. Since Medicaid does not support this, where will the seniors go who cannot afford assisted living or continuing care?

Again, our purpose in opposing the HH building plan is based on LAND USE ONLY. We want to preserve our beautiful community and not let the HH provide the precedent to destroy Riverdale and the other protected areas of New York City. We have the backing of the Riverdale Community Coalition and the Riverdale Community Preservancy and our local politicians in this effort, as we all care about preserving our beloved Riverdale.

Myra Fasner

Sunday, April 23