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More Reporting and Investigation Needed to Protect Vulnerable Seniors

The Chatham Daily News published a story last week about the problems of elder abuse. An educational workshop was recently in the area held which sparked discussion about the ways in which seniors are exploited, neglected, and abused.

One speaker, legal scholar Robert Solomon, explained that many protections are in place to help vulnerable seniors but they are not well known. He emphasized that the law does protect at-risk elderly community members in all sorts of situations, from exploitation by predatory salesmen to neglect by nursing home staff members. Yet, all too often these seniors and their families are unaware of the legal options that they have to fight the abuse.

To help combat the problem, the professor suggested expanding public bodies that work to investigate allegations of abuse. Also, the agencies charged with the task need to develop better “user-friendly” processes that are less intimidating to the average person.

Another speaker at the workshop emphasized the scope of the problem of elder abuse. There remains an element of embarrassment among many seniors following their abuse or being taken in by scams. That leads to severe underreporting of the problem. She explained, “It is something we all need to work together to recognize and stop and report.”

Our Chicago nursing home attorneys at Levin & Perconti encourage anyone who suspects that their loved one may have suffered at the hands of inadequate, negligent, or abusive care to contact a nursing home lawyer. The first step in ensuring that future seniors are protected is to hold the past abusers accountable for their bad acts.