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By: jabaPosted on April 30, 2021

An important community event this Saturday endorsed by JABA, is the “Save Our Seniors” Network’s Stop Pacifica’s Evictions of Seniors from Sakura Intermediate Care Facility (ICF) Event on Saturday, May 1, 2021, at 2:00 p.m., in front of that facility in Boyle Heights at 325 S. Boyle Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90033. The program includes presentations by Sakura ICF families and residents, East Los Angeles Taiko, clergy, elected officials, and others. Serving the Japanese American Community for over 40 years, Sakura ICF, which formerly was known as Keiro Intermediate Care Nursing Facility and one of the four former nonprofit Keiro facilities, provides the essential and required bilingual and bicultural healthcare and services greatly needed by the Japanese American/Japanese senior residents at that facility. This unique healthcare facility and home for numerous seniors was started due to the lack of language access and racial inequities in this country’s healthcare system. Currently, this is the only existing Intermediate Care Facility with such bilingual and culturally-sensitive care and services in the U.S. Pacifica Companies (Pacifica), a for-profit international real estate developer, owner, investor, and investment management company, announced in February 2021, even though they have not fully complied with the 5-year conditions of sale imposed and required by the State Attorney General, their intent to close Sakura ICF. Pacifica has applied to L.A. City Planning to convert that property in Boyle Heights to market-rate multi-family units and a parking structure. Despite tremendous public objections by the Community, government officials and many others to the eviction of these very elderly, disabled and frail seniors, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, the continued need for this significant and vital bilingual and bicultural facility, and the Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council’s expressed opposition to Pacifica’s gentrifying and harmful proposed conversion project, Pacifica submitted to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) their “Transition Plan” for Sakura ICF on March 29, 2021, to proceed with their eviction and facility closure plans. Pacifica’s proposed “Transition Plan” was rejected by CDPH on April 19, 2021. A few days ago, the Administrator at Sakura ICF re-submitted on behalf of Pacifica a revised “Transition Plan” for that facility to continue their coercive and harmful efforts to evict and displace the seniors from their current home against the best interest of the residents’ health, safety and lives. One of the proposed “relocation” options by Pacifica is their own Kei-Ai Los Angeles Healthcare Center, which was an unqualified COVID designated skilled nursing facility (SNF) that has had an extremely high number of COVID cases and the highest number of SNF COVID-related resident deaths (i.e., 105) in California and beyond. Other proposed facilities include another Pacifica-owned facility, Kei-Ai South Bay Healthcare Center, which has had 17 COVID-related resident deaths, and various entirely different, inadequate, and unaffordable facilities. There are Japanese American and Japanese residents in their 80’s, 90’s or older and survivors of the incarceration in U.S. concentration camps during WWII residing at Sakura ICF. By evicting the seniors at this facility during the pandemic and subjecting them to potential transfer trauma is cruel, inhumane and tantamount to a death sentence. Help protect the lives of our seniors! Stop the evictions at Sakura ICF! Support AB 279, emergency pending legislation that prohibits SNFs and ICFs, like Sakura ICF, from denying or significantly changing such facility or transferring to another facility, residents of those facilities during the COVID-19 state of emergency! Also support AB 749 prohibiting a skilled nursing facility from contracting with a person as a medical director if the person is not, or will not be within 5 years, certified by the American Board of Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine as a Certified Medical Director! Oppose Pacifica’s revised “Transition Plan”! For more information about this May 1st event organized by Save Our Seniors Network, see the attached event flyers and SOS Network’s website at: Please wear all-black clothing and carry signs with your objections to Pacifica’s plans. This is a social distancing event. FACE MASKS are required!

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