Mayor Paul Jenkins has responded to criticism over the removal of a seniors group from Club 580.
In a public letter, Seniors Club 580 says they were kicked from the space with no warning. They argue that the proposed youth center, which is moving into Club 580, should be placed at L’Amable or the Switchyard. They also say that the equipment they have brought to the center will be left behind. Because of this decision, the Club says they have nowhere left to go.
But Mayor Jenkins disagrees with the Seniors Club’s telling of events. Jenkins doesn’t know where the confusion came from, although part of it he thinks is due to the lack of face-to-face meetings over the last year. He says there are two seniors clubs in operation and the Club 580 seniors are welcome to either merge with that club or operate on another day at the Dungannon Center. Should they do that, Jenkins says the Club can operate there at no charge like they had been doing before, at a facility that’s in much better shape.
He says Club 580 will now benefit many more people in the community. He says the need for a child care and youth center is great, as in some cases there was no daycare space for essential workers. Jenkins says he will try to balance the needs of as many people as possible, and that public spaces are not for any one person’s exclusive use. He stresses the Town will try to serve the community as a whole and will try to provide what is needed.