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Eliza Bryant Village nursing home to close in June

 Eliza Bryant Village is closing its nursing home on June 8, 2022. [Eliza Bryant]
Eliza Bryant Village is closing its nursing home on June 8, 2022. [Eliza Bryant]

Eliza Bryant Village officials announced Thursday the organization will close its nursing home effective June 8, 2022.

Eliza Bryant Village provides services for Black seniors, including affordable senior housing, home care, senior outreach, adult day services, and transportation.

All of those services will continue to operate. Only the nursing home is closing. Nursing homes were hit hard by the pandemic, with burnout and low pay leading many staff members to quit.

It's a physically and emotionally demanding job, and there are other less stressful jobs that pay more, said Eliza Bryant Village President Danny Williams.

"I would not be shocked for you to see additional, smaller nursing homes, independent nursing homes, nonprofits, that will be looking at similar fates in the near future," he said.

The 126-year-old organization cited pandemic challenges, unsustainable operating costs and inadequate Medicaid reimbursement as reasons the nursing home will have to close.

Staff members will help relocate residents to other nursing home facilities in the area, Williams said, and they'll also try to assist staff in finding other jobs.

Eliza Bryant is currently the largest employer in the Hough neighborhood on Cleveland's east side, he said.

"We hope to make sure our staff has a soft landing at some of the places our residents will be going," Williams said.

"It's going to be a loss to the community, but we want to make sure that that loss is not felt by the folks that are most important in this entire equation, that's our residents and our dedicated staff."

Eliza Bryant Village started in 1896 as a place to care for aging Black Clevelanders who had no loved ones to care for them.

"Our first priority is to make sure that we help our residents find a place that will care for them, in a way that not only looks after their physical needs, but also their psychological needs, and that includes understanding what it's like to be Black in America," Williams said.

There were not many places founded specifically to take care of poor Black people, and Cleveland will feel the loss of the historic institution, Williams said.

lisa.ryan@ideastream.org | 216-916-6158