Repurposing of previously closed jail facility has given vital County food program continued capacity for operations
The Union County Board of County Commissioners informs residents that the “Meals on Wheels” program has been operational since the Spring of 2022, using the mostly vacant Union County Jail facility, located in Elizabeth.
Hurricane IDA heavily impacted Union County and the Meals on Wheels facility in Linden was flooded. The County of Union decided the best option was to use the now mostly vacant Union County Jail. The facility had recently been closed in 2021, saving tens of millions in taxpayer dollars.
“Repurposing the County Jail’s kitchen gave Meals on Wheels the tools, space and capacity to meet the needs of the program,” said County Commissioner Chair Rebecca Williams. “It has a full kitchen, big enough to produce, pack and prepare the meals for delivery and is equipped with elevators and lifts as well as a loading area for the vehicles picking up the meals.”
Currently a fleet of 23 vehicles delivers 1200 meals to elder residents in needs. Meals on Wheels is by far the largest program within the Department of Human Services, servicing the most people on a daily basis.
“There is a nutrition element to this, but there is also the critical element of the in-person and face to face delivery which for some people may be their only contact with someone throughout the day,” said Commissioner Sergio Granados, who serves as Liaison to the Human Services Advisory Council. “This ensures that all those benefitting from Meals on Wheels get the nutrition they need.”
“Since moving to the jail facility, this program logistically produces its daily meals at a high rate – and continues to run efficiently and effectively,” said Debbie-Ann Anderson, Director of the Union County Department of Human Services.
If you or a senior you know needs nutritious meals delivered, please contact Meals on Wheels at 908-486-5100.
For all Union County programs and services visit ucnj.org, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email firstname.lastname@example.org or use the online Contact Form.
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