Pacifica Senior Living residents in Sunrise struggle without kitchen amid rat infestation

SUNRISE, Fla. – Loved ones with relatives at Pacifica Senior Living in Sunrise were outraged when they learned that a rodent infestation forced state officials to shut down the facility’s kitchen.

Efforts to get rid of the rodent issue were ongoing for about six weeks, but residents weren’t informed until Thursday. Some were still in the dark Friday.

Laura Murray, who lives in Chicago, said her 81-year-old mother is a Pacifica Senior Living resident who was getting her daily meals from that kitchen in Sunrise.

“It’s egregious, its shocking,” Murray said. “It’s not acceptable.”

It wasn’t until Local 10 News aired a video on Wednesday that residents, their family members, and even the Department of Health learned of the problem.

Murray was outraged and said that “covering this up” and not notifying families was also unacceptable.

“It’s almost criminal,” Murray said.

On Monday, a chef threw away a trap out with a rodent on it in the dumpster. There were plastic bowls of corn flakes with the tops eaten off in some spots, so the rodents could get to the cereal.

Darrin Cohen said his mother also lives at the Pacifica Senior Living facility in Sunrise and she too was outraged about the way the problem was handled.

“They should have reached out to us immediately, as soon as they found out there was something going on,” Cohen said.

The residents have been eating food from Olive Garden and sandwiches since the kitchen closed. Cohen said the facility hasn’t provided special dietary meals.

“She has medical conditions where she cant swallow so she wasn’t able to eat dinner, which we were unaware of,” Cohen said.

Murray was dealing with the same problem. Her mother had not eaten on Friday morning. Bridget Parks, the executive director of the facility, refused to comment.

“I have reached out and sent her messages, e-mails and texts. It shows she has read my texts, but there was no response,” Murray said.

Cohen said he was going to meet with the management team to see if they could give him more information.

“They have been negligent in the way they have handled this,” Murray said.

Employees at the facility’s corporate office in California also did not respond to requests for comment.

Read the facility’s letter

Pacifica Senior Living (.)

About the Author:

Jeff Weinsier joined Local 10 News in September 1994. He is currently an investigative reporter for Local 10. He is also responsible for the very popular Dirty Dining segments.