Appointment to the Governor's Elder Abuse Work Group and Introduction of Reform Legislation
Elder Voice was appointed to the Governor's Elder Abuse Work Group along with AARP, Legal Aid, Alzheimer's Association and Elder Justice Center. We developed significant reform legislation of the senior care industry in Minnesota. The bill was introduced in both the Senate and House but House leadership would not allow the bill to be heard and pursued a much weaker bill that we didn't support.
Achieved Significant Media Coverage and Support
Elder Voice Family Advocates received media coverage from the TV networks and the Star Tribune as well as the Pioneer Press. Elder Voice was frequently asked to comment on legislative matters throughout the session. Some of the coverage can be reviewed in 'News' section of this website.
Leveraging of OHFC Complaint and Investigation Data to Educate
Several members combed through the OHFC investigation data and collected it by legislative area. This data was delivered to key legislators so they were aware of the complaints and issues.in their areas. The TV media and Star Tribune covered this story extensively.
We have also had community meetings in Rochester and St. Cloud where we reported on the number and type of investigations were conducted in those areas. Both the Rochester Post Bulletin and the St. Cloud Times covered the meetings and reported on the information provided.
Legislative Auditor Issues 'Scathing' Report on the OHFC
At the request of Elder Voice, the Minnesota Legislative Auditor completed its' audit of the OHFC and released the findings in March of 2018. Legislators shifted their focus from our reform legislation to the many failings of this Office.
Elder Abuse Work Groups Established by the Department of Health
The Commissioner of the Department of Health initiated several staffing changes and began the updating of the technology capabilities of the Office. Additionally, the Commissioner began a series of elder abuse work groups to attempt to find areas of agreement and possible compromise on legislative solutions. Elder Voice and other advocacy groups, the industry, and state agency staff have been working since August of 2018.