This week, state Representative Juanita Brent (D-Cleveland) and state Senator Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood) introduced companion legislation to allow residents of facilities such as nursing homes and assisted living facilities to set up a video recording device in their room. The resident’s family could also provide consent if the resident is not capable of doing so. The goal is to mitigate elder abuse in Ohio.
“There are approximately 16,000 cases of Elder Abuse reported every year in Ohio,” said Rep. Brent. “Personally, I find this number staggering! It is about time someone stood up and fought for elder care. We need to hold those who take care of our loved ones accountable for their actions.”
“This legislation was brought to my attention by a constituent of mine, Steve Piskor,” said Senator Antonio. “Mr. Piskor’s mother, Esther, was living in a nursing home in Northeast Ohio, when she was abused by health care professionals, a tragedy that he uncovered via a hidden video camera. Having an aging parent in a nursing home is already a stressful experience, but this bill could help ease some of those concerns.”
While 16,000 cases of elder abuse are reported every year in Ohio, the National Institute of Health believes only one in 14 cases is actually reported. Elder abuse refers to any knowing, intentional or negligent act by a caregiver or any person that causes harm or serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult.
The bill will now be referred to a committee both in the Ohio Senate and the Ohio House.