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December 19, 2011

CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
(617) 704-6682


Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Mike Reiser (far left) with the Inspirational Seniors following the administration of the Department’s Senior ID Program.

Members of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department visited the People’s Baptist Church in Roxbury to bring the Department’s Senior ID Program to the group known as the “Inspirational Seniors.”

Sergeant Abe Ayuso and Deputy Mike Reiser of the Department’s Communications and External Affairs Division were making their second trip to complete the administration of the program for the active senior group, signing up a total of 44 new participants who will be receiving their Department–issued I.D.s.

The Senior ID Program – offered free of charge to Suffolk County seniors aged 65 and older – provides participants with a concise and comprehensive identification card that serves as an important aid to medical responders, should an emergency arise and the holder is unable to communicate. The I.D. cards include a photo of the cardholder, his or her name, address, and medical history, and the name and phone number of the cardholder’s physician and emergency contact, as well as other pertinent information. In addition, the Senior ID is also accepted as a secondary form of identification by many agencies and institutions around Suffolk County.

As the coordinator of the Inspirational Seniors group, Selma Johnson helps to provide members with activities and recreation, bible studies and the distribution of nutritious lunches, among other duties. Ms. Johnson also helps to advocate for some of the different needs of the group and, with respect to health and safety, she welcomes the opportunity to bring in resources from neighborhood, city and state organizations.

“This is our fifth year running this program and we have a good group here,” said Ms. Johnson. “We’ve done everything from taking trips to the Boston Symphony Orchestra and holding regular Bingo games to running blood pressure screenings and health fairs to help our members. The Senior ID Program from the Sheriff’s Department is good because it gives seniors another helpful tool to keep them safe and healthy.”

“We do need different services, and this is one that can be really important,” agreed Josephine Worrell, Senior ID participant and 99–year–old Inspirational Senior. “It’s good that our group is taking part.”

For Pat O’Neal, her status as both a member of the People’s Baptist Church and the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department has allowed her to see the benefit that the program can have for seniors.

“This program has helped a lot of people,” said O’Neal. “These I.D.s are very useful just as a second form of identification and, in the unfortunate case of a medical emergency, they can even help to save your life if you are unable to speak for yourself. This really is an important service to be able to provide.”

To learn about how you can help to support the “Inspirational Seniors,” call Selma Johnson at (617) 427–1116.

For more information about the Senior ID Program and other Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department community outreach programs, visit

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