The Film Everyone Working in Assisted Living Must See

The Thin Edge of Dignity Assisted Living Documentary by Dick Weinman

Photo of Dick Weinman

Dick Weinman

What is it like to live in an Assisted Living Facility (ALF)? Find out from someone who knows first-hand. Dick Weinman is a retired professor of broadcast communications at Oregon State University, an author, and a former radio personality. He is also a resident of an ALF.

After a car accident left him severely disabled, Weinman became dependent on the care he receives in his ALF.  For a man of independent spirit, this dependency is stressful, limiting, and often humiliating. In this short, gripping film, he talks about

  • Loss of privacy, independence, and functional ability.
  • Why he hopes staff has kindness in their heart.
  • What it is like to rely on a caregiver to handle intimate activities of daily living (ADLs).
  • How life in a senior care community can lead to isolation and marking time until death.
  • His suggestions for improving quality of life for residents.

Although Weinman speaks only for himself, these are experiences seniors commonly face when they live in care communities. His film is poignant and important. Everyone who works in Assisted Living–or at any level of care–should see this film.

Watch The Thin Edge of Dignity

Share this Film with Your Community

I encourage your community to screen it for all staff. Better yet, screen it for all staff and residents, then encourage them to share their thoughts about it–and about life at your community–with each other. Use this conversation as a way to increase empathy for the residents’ experiences, build relationships, and inspire positive change.

Download: Discussion Guide for Thin Edge of Dignity Video, developed by Oregon Department of Human Services Aging and People with Disabilities State Unit on Aging.

Kind Dining® Communities, Review Module 2

Remember “Feel the Change a Comin’ from your Kind Dining® curriculum? At your next dining all-staff, review that module. Ask staff to share what they have learned since the first time they took Module 2. Has anything changed about their understanding of the aging process since they completed Kind Dining® training? How have the knowledge, skills, and attitudes they learned in Module 2 helped them to gain empathy and serve residents better over time? Find out what your staff feels should improve next and work together to create action plans.

If you need help, or would like to learn more about how Kind Dining® can help your staff improve quality of life for residents, call 503-913-1978 or e-mail Cindy.

About Cindy Heilman

Cindy Heilman MS, DTR: Cindy Heilman has over 25 years of experience in enhancing hospitality, and food service standards. She is the CEO of her own company, Higher Standards LLC, and creator of Kind Dining® Training. Her unique background in restaurant ownership, in hospitality and healthcare food service, in working as a Dietetic Technician Registered and Healthcare Specialist at SYSCO Foodservices, led her to the development of her exclusive program that improves relationships and lives of aging residents through the dining experience.

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