Ensure that Nursing Home Residents are Free from Physical and Sexual Abuse
The goal is that all nursing home residents are free from physical and sexual abuse. Any type of abuse in a nursing home environment is wrong and a crime. Under the Minnesota Nursing Homes Residents Bill of Rights, all residents have the right to “be free from harm, including abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.” Physical abuse is the most common type of abuse in nursing homes but sexual abuse also occurs behind closed doors. No one wants to think that this could be happening to a family member. Sexual abuse can be one of the hardest things to admit to and to overcome but it is incredibly important for the welfare of all residents that any act of sexual abuse be reported to a nursing home abuse attorney as soon as possible.
Sexual, Physical and Psychological Abuse of Nursing Home Residents Must be Free from Assault
Sexual abuse usually happens behind closed doors. The criminal will often attack at night and will leave the victim feeling disgusted and ashamed. Furthermore, sexual abuse often comes with mental abuse as well. Name calling, treating the residents in a demeaning or threatening manner and harassment all fall under the category of verbal abuse. In many instances, a resident will be intimated by verbal abuse and will not report the sexual or physical abuse due to fear and shame or a fear that they will not be believed. Resident’s are also fearful that if they cause a problem they will be forced out of the facility and have nowhere to go. Be on the lookout for the following signs and symptoms of sexual abuse in a resident:
• Any physical cuts, scratches or bruising • Signs of depression or anxiety • Extreme fear or nervousness, especially when an employee is present • Isolation • Mood changes • Weight loss or weight gain
Sexual abuse can lead to severe emotional complications including low self esteem, suicidal thoughts and depression. It is critical for the welfare of all residents that sexual abuse be stopped immediately. What to Do if You Suspect Sexual Abuse If you suspect that your loved one is being abused sexually, then you need to speak to them about it. Often times the resident will feel so ashamed that they will deny anything is wrong. Look for the signs of nursing home sexual and mental abuse, as listed above, and report any suspicious behavior to the authorities. By contacting an ensuring nursing home abuse lawyer, you are ensuring that all residents, both present and future, are protected against this criminal behavior. An experienced attorney will be able to assist with dealing with law enforcement and other government officials to hold the wrongdoer and facility accountable and to protect others. In many cases, nursing home sexual abuse occurs because the nursing staff has not been given a proper background check during the hiring process. Most nursing homes are understaffed with high rates of turnover thus the nursing home may often have a need to overlook hiring protocols designed to protect the safety of the residents. It is the law that all nursing staff have a criminal background check but this is often waived due to the high demand for staff. In many instances, a nurse with a history of abuse will still be able to find work in nursing homes or other form of elder care facility, despite having been placed on a watch list. Often times sexual abuse of nursing home residents is a preventable form of neglect if the facility management would have the required background checks for new employees as well as enough staff to ensure the residents are well supervised, reducing the liklihood of sexual assaults. If you need to speak with a top rated elder abuse attorney for a free consultation call Kenneth LaBore at 612-743-9048 or contact Mr. LaBore by email at KLaBore@MNursinghomeneglect.com