Esther’s Law is potential legislation allowing cameras in the rooms of nursing homes. The bipartisan bill recently passed unanimously in the Ohio Senate. If the bill ultimately passes into state law, residents and their families would be able to install cameras in the rooms of nursing homes and long-term care facilities. The intent is the prevention of elder abuse among residents.
The Cleveland elder abuse attorneys at Paulozzi LPA have been representing the victims of elderly abuse and neglect, including sexual abuse and wrongful death. We are here to protect you and your loved ones.
The bill is named after Esther Piskor. The 90-year-old lived in a Northeast Ohio nursing home 11 years ago. Esther’s family grew concerned after they noticed unexplained bruises and shifts in her mood to sullen and quiet.
They discovered she was being assaulted by her caregivers after they installed hidden cameras in her room. The footage was decisive evidence against several of Ether’s aids who lost their jobs and were sentenced to jail time for the abuse.
One of the sponsors of the bill, Ohio State Senator Nickie Antonio, claims. “The state got more than 19,000 reports of elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation in 2018, the most recent year for which statistics are available.”
The incidents reported increased by almost 3,000 from the previous year.
The proposed law states that cameras will be installed at the family’s expense. The cameras focused on a resident’s room would need permission from any roommates, if there are any. The bill also protects camera users from facilities retaliating or discriminating against the residents or their families.
The Ohio House is the next step for Esther’s Law where it will be assigned to a committee.
The nursing home crisis during the pandemic has implored the public to take a closer look at an often-overlooked demographic.
It is hard to gauge the true number of how many elderly are abused and neglected each year because, according to the National Center on Elder Abuse, only an estimated 16% of abuse is reported. Still, the number of reported cases has increased every year over the last decade.
In 2018, there could have been as many as five million victims with only 800,000 cases being addressed. One thing is certain, as nursing homes and long-term facilities continue to overpopulate, unreported abuse will continue to rise until something is done.
It is not just nursing homes, there is a long list of places where abuse occurs. Just a few include:
The Cleveland elder abuse attorneys at Paulozzi LPA can build strong cases because of our resources—highly qualified medical experts and investigators. Our team fights for those who cannot fight for themselves. Our goal is justice.