News : Helpline Departs Island in 2013
Dec 31, 2013 -- Lou Hernandez, an 18-year veteran CEO of the Helpline crisis call center, retired at the end of June, and said that he would be leaving the island due to the high cost of living here.
"I'm going to be in and out of Key West," Hernandez told The Citizen. "Typical retirees, your savings are gone in two years. How do you pay for your house? You've got to have at least two jobs to stay here."
By the end of the year, the Helpline board announced that the organization itself would be disbanding, a victim of budget cuts and more clients seeking referrals and other information via the Internet.
"The board of directors did not make this decision lightly," President Mary Lou Hoover said in a written statement released Christmas Eve. "It came as a result of much soul searching and heavy hearts. Every member of the board feels strongly about the mission of Helpline."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Thursday, January 2, 2014