Housley Highlights Work to Prevent Elder Abuse in New Ad

On Tuesday, the Housley for Senate campaign released a new TV advertisement entitled “Values”. The ad, which highlights Karin Housley’s commitment to protecting elderly and vulnerable Minnesotans, is the campaign’s third broadcast spot of the election cycle.

“When I discovered thousands of complaints alleging elder abuse and neglect were being thrown in the trash, I immediately got to work. These are our moms and dads, our brothers and sisters, our neighbors and friends – and they deserve to be protected,” Housley said. “Tina Smith spent seven years in the governor’s office without making the wellbeing of elderly and vulnerable Minnesotans a priority. This happened because of failed leadership.”

A 2017 Star Tribune investigation exposed a “breakdown in the state’s handling of elder abuse cases” with “hundreds of residents at senior care centers across Minnesota … beaten, sexually assaulted, or robbed each year.” The report found only three percent of complaints were ever actually investigated by the responsible state agency, with thousands of complaints thrown in the trash.

Housley continued: “Since my mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s eight years ago, caring for our elderly has had a special place in my heart. As the chairwoman of the first-ever Senate Aging and Long-Term Care Committee, I’m proud of the work I’ve done to make sure elderly and vulnerable Minnesotans are forgotten no longer – and I’m looking forward to continuing that work in the United States Senate.”

Karin Housley is fighting for Minnesota seniors

Minnesota senator demands greater disclosure on senior abuse, investigations
Star Tribune, 3/15/18

Lawmaker calls for new law on secrecy in elder abuse complaints
KARE 11, 12/12/17

Minnesota elder-care whistleblower was fired, according to state lawmaker: ‘I want answers’
Pioneer Press, 12/12/17

As a state senator, Karin Housley…

  • Led the effort to create a first-ever Minnesota Senate committee related to aging and long-term care issues, which she currently chairs.
  • Uncovered a backlog of maltreatment reports and complaints that had piled up within the Minnesota Department of Health and the Office of Health Facility Complaints.
  • Called for immediate action, legislative hearings, and a full legislative audit to address the bureaucratic failings of the Dayton-Smith administration.
  • Demanded systemic changes within the bureaucracy and ensured the resignation of the commissioner of health and subsequent shakeup within the Office of Health Facility Complaints.
  • Fought for an interagency agreement between the Minnesota Department of Human Services and the Minnesota Department of Health to streamline the backlog of complaints.
  • Worked across the aisle, and with the administration, to address elder abuse, including statewide listening sessions, dozens of stakeholder meetings, and countless hours of public testimony that led to a workable solution – but was vetoed by the governor. She was one of the only officials who always came to the table to work on this issue. Others gave up, others were too divisive to be effective.

Karin Housley has achieved meaningful reform.

  • Hearing loss training to home care provider staff (Chapter 51, HF 952/SF 818 – 2017)
    Assisting home care providers in becoming more familiar with health issues and other limitations related to hearing loss.
  • Palliative Care Advisory Council (Chapter 6, special session SF 2 – 2017)
    Establishing a palliative care advisory council to consider the availability of palliative care in the state, barriers to greater access, and more.
  • Elderly Waiver reform (Chapter 6, special session SF 2 – 2017)
    Reforms to the Elderly Waiver program in Minnesota, modifying the rate methodology for customized living services and appropriating money to the Elderly Waiver Program.
  • Safe Seniors Financial Protection Act (Chapter 161, HF 3833/SF 919 – 2018)
    Helping with the prevention of fraud to older and vulnerable adults, aiming to catch potential fraud or exploitation before it happens.

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