Bills aimed at protecting seniors signed by governor

Bills aimed at protecting seniors signed by governor

LANSING —Gov. Snyder signed legislation into law on Tuesday designed to help increase the reporting of elder abuse in Michigan and strengthen penalties for those convicted of the offense, said Sen. Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge. 

“The fact that our seniors are not being properly cared for is infuriating,” Jones said. “I’m proud to have worked with Sen. Schuitmaker, R-Lawton, to help pass this vital package of bills, and I look forward to their positive impact.”

Elder abuse is a problem affecting nearly 80,000 senior citizens in Michigan, with many enduring unspeakable acts of physical, emotional and financial abuse. According to Jones, the measures seek to better protect the elderly and enforce stricter penalties for abusers.

Measures in the package would:
• Improve coordination between state and local authorities;
• Allow victims of alleged vulnerable adult abuse to give testimony via closed circuit television or a pre-recorded video;
• Create a senior medical alert for missing seniors, similar to an Amber Alert;
• Increase penalties for financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult; and
• Further protect those who are at risk of being exploited without placing an unmanageable burden on their guardians.