Thursday, December 2, 2021

Play

Michiganders mourn the loss of four students after this week's school shooting at Oxford High School, and SCOTUS Justices signal willingness to back a Mississippi abortion prohibition law.

Play

The Supreme Court debates abortion rights; Stacey Abrams will again run to be Georgia's governor; and Congress scrambles to avoid a shutdown.

Play

Seniors in non-urban areas struggle with hunger disproportionately; rural communities make a push for federal money; and Planned Parenthood takes a case to the Montana Supreme Court.

AARP: Most Iowans Support Tougher Elder-Abuse Law

Play

Friday, September 24, 2021   

DES MOINES, Iowa -- There is strong public support in Iowa to enact a state law that criminalizes elder abuse, a topic also being discussed by law enforcement and state agencies.

In an AARP survey this summer, 95% of Iowans said they want a law that clearly defines elder abuse as a crime, language currently not found in state statute.

The issue came up in a webinar this week, hosted by the Iowa State Bar Association.

Paul Greenwood, a retired deputy district attorney from the San Diego County Attorney's Office who handled elder abuse cases, said financial exploitation is a common form, but he sees too much hesitancy among authorities to pursue investigations.

"Because they have given the money to a suspect without force, without threats, without violence, the police officer will then regard that as being non-criminal," Greenwood explained.

But he pointed out by digging deeper, investigators often find falsehoods were used to solicit funds from a vulnerable person. He noted crimes also may go unreported because the victim is embarrassed.

A bill in the Iowa Legislature essentially creates a new criminal offense for financial exploitation and other harms against Iowans age 60 and older. It passed the Senate this year, but stalled in the House, although records show no stated opposition.

Advocates of the bill hope it is revived early next year, so it can clear its final legislative hurdle. In the meantime, certain state offices are rolling out enhanced efforts, including more adult protective staff within the Department of Human Services.

Greenwood argued education can help, too.

"I really do feel that local prosecutors have a duty to go out into the community as much as they can and actually spread the word," Greenwood urged. "Talk at Rotary Clubs, Kiwanis, Lions Clubs, at retirees' meetings."

He added it is a good opportunity to explain the many ways in which older people are taken advantage of, including by relatives or neighbors. And he agreed with local advocates in Iowa, state law needs more teeth to prosecute those who prey on older residents.


get more stories like this via email
Civil rights groups are pushing Baltimore County to create a second majority Black council district to better represent its diverse population. (Flickr)

Social Issues

BALTIMORE, Md. -- Maryland civil rights groups are proposing a lawsuit against Baltimore County if it adopts its current redistricting plan, claiming …


Social Issues

LINCOLN, Neb. -- Nearly seven in ten Americans say billionaires are not paying their fair share in taxes, according to a new survey. Among likely …

Social Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. -- Over the coming weeks, North Dakotans will be clicking the "purchase" button as they order holiday gifts online, and fraud experts …


Front-line pandemic workers in Minnesota feel the state is failing them in recognizing them for their work during the crisis, as they were not allowed to work remotely. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

MINNEAPOLIS -- Several regional labor groups rallied in Minneapolis on Wednesday, demanding state leaders take action to reflect the sacrifices made …

Environment

GREENE, Iowa -- The proposed Build Back Better bill is getting attention for a host of funding possibilities, including one area flying under the …

The Republican-created legislative and congressional maps, passed by the Wisconsin Legislature in November, were quickly vetoed by Gov. Tony Evers, teeing up a legal battle. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

MADISON, Wis. -- In a four-three decision this week, the Wisconsin Supreme Court backed a "least-change" approach to redistricting in the state…

Social Issues

OXFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- Michiganders are mourning the loss of four students after this week's school shooting at Oxford High School, and advocates …

Social Issues

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. -- Labor protests and strikes are on the upswing this fall, compared with 2020 when everyone hunkered as the pandemic closed …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021