CHICAGO, IL – The Department on Aging is responding to more than 20,000 reports of elder abuse that has occurred within the last year. Last Monday, Governor J.B. Pritzker created a 22-member Elder Abuse Task Force to further investigate current practices and raise the publics’ awareness of elderly abuse.
The newly-created task force was created through Senate Joint Resolution 13 and passed both houses unanimously. The Elder Abuse Task Force is staffed with legislators, agency heads, and elder abuse experts which range from state directors at AARP Illinois to an Illinois State Police captain.
The task force will analyze the effectiveness of elder protective services in Illinois and other states to develop a long-term plan to combat elder abuse in Illinois. Pritzker will be presented all findings and recommendations by January 1, 2021.
“One case of elder abuse would be too many,” Pritzker said. “But 20,000 annually is unacceptable. We need to tackle this head on.”
Paula Basta, the director of the Illinois Department of Aging, mentioned the reports of abuse included adults over the age of 60 and older and people 18 to 59 with a disability. She made note that abuse comes in many forms – it’s not limited to simply physical abuse, but furthermore passive neglect, financial exploitation, emotional and verbal abuse, among many more. In many cases, an elder is experiencing more than one form of abuse.
According to The Telegraph, the task force is staffed includes:
- Katie Stuart – 112th District Legislator
- State Sen. Rachelle Crowe
- Kristopher Tharp – Lieutenant, Madison County Sheriff’s Office
- Tonya Genoese – Assistant State’s Attorney, Madison Country State’s Attorney Office
- State Sen. Craig Wilcox
- Debbie Verschelde – Executive Director, Aging Care Connections
- Lori Hendren – Associate State Director, AARP Illinois
- Dawn Wells – RN, Area Manager, Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services
- Aimee Isham – Bureau Chief for Long Term Care, Illinois Department of Public Health
- Paul Isaac – Senior Advisor to the Secretary, Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
- Gene Seaman – Human Rights Authority Supervising Manager, Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission
If you suspect a loved one is suffering from elder abuse, please contact Dinizulu Law Group, Ltd right away. Our experienced attorney’s work diligently until your case is resolved and your loved one is out of harm’s way. Please call our office at (312) 384-1920 or visit our website for more information.