Irwin prefaced his remarks by noting tht the Advisory Board was established as a watchdog to guard against the sale of the facility to a for-profit corporation. "Councilman Cusick should be aware of this as he was one of the members of Council at that time who were in favor of the sale," he remarked.
Irwin went on to tick off four reasons why meetings have been suspended.
First, in the midst of a pandemic, there is little danger that any for-profit corporation would want to buy Gracedale.
Second, County Council receives very detailed reports monthly from Gracedale staff at the Human Services Committee.
Third, as AFSCME's representative at the home, he is on constant contact with both employees and administrators, and knows exactly what is happening.
Fourth, conducting meetings may actually have increased the infection and death rate because it would have imposed a burden on staff at a time when "one more straw could break the camel's back.
Irwin vowed meetings will resume once the pandemic abates.