An old age home in Australia was forced to explain why its residents were given such a meager meal after the image sparked outrage online.
An old age home in Australia is facing the wrath of the internet and authorities after a photo of the underwhelming meal served to its residents on Christmas Day was posted online. The photo was taken by a concerned visitor who found a resident crying in her room with a sloppy plate of baked beans and mashed potatoes. Vales Nursing Home in Morphett Vale, located in south Adelaide, was forced to explain why its residents were given such a meager meal after the image sparked outrage online and was sent to a local administrator who took the facility to task.
According to Daily Mail, local state MP, Nat Cook, blasted the nursing home after the visitor who witnessed a resident in tears sent her a picture of the unappetizing meal. "This is a particularly awful looking plate of food on any day, but on Christmas..," Cook said on Thursday. She also posted the controversial photo on Twitter writing, Today some nursing home residents were served beans and mash for Xmas Lunch. I’m following up with the facility. The image shows two clumps of mashed potato on top of a sea of beans served in a rather untidy fashion.
Today some nursing home residents were served beans and mash for Xmas Lunch. I’m following up with the facility. @maggie_beer #agedcare #food pic.twitter.com/GhCF0wna3J— Nat Cook MP (@NatCookMP) December 25, 2019
Cook and the nursing home visitor who witnessed the meal being served, highlighted how devastated a resident of the nursing home had been after being served this meal. "The poor dear was sobbing in her room with what she had been served to eat, in her room and alone," said the visitor. Cook revealed that she spoke to the staff at Vales Nursing Home after she was made aware of the incident, as well as with chief executive Neil Pahuja, who is also deputy chairman of the Aged Care Industry Association.
The nursing home's parent company All Care Aged Care later issued a statement claiming the meal was not the resident's Christmas lunch and likely only served as a light evening snack. Although the company admitted that the mashed potato and beans were "very poorly presented," it justified that it was simply a light meal that was provided on request. "We will definitely investigate If the posted image was served as an evening meal alternative and immediately ensure such meals even as a lighter meal are served in a far more appetizing way," it stated.
"We serve approximately 185,000 meals a year and expect all to be of a high standard. We are monitoring the matter closely to ensure no lack in presentation or quality in food occurs at any stage," the company added. All Care also claimed its Christmas lunch included traditional ham, pumpkin, potatoes, and other vegetables, and that food and drinks were unlimited. Debra Mathews—a Vales staff member of 13 years—said the main holiday meal was served on Christmas Eve and that those who didn't go out with their families on Christmas Day were served roast, soup, and dessert.