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24 September 2008

5 Georgia Republicans Vote Against The Elder Abuse Victims Act of 2008

Yesterday, when the U.S. House passed the Elder Abuse Victims Act of 2008 (H.R.5352), there were twenty-eight votes cast against it. Five of those votes came from Republican Congressmen representing the state of Georgia.

U.S. Representatives Paul Broun, Nathan Deal, Jack Kingston, John Linder and Lynn Westmoreland all opposed the legislation that would require the Department of Justice to hire staff to work on elder justice issues and direct the Department of Health and Human Services to hire personnel to investigate cases of elder care neglect. The other eight members of Georgia's congressional delegation all voted for the bill [Source: House Roll Call #626].

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, between 1-2 million Americans over the age of 65 have been injured, mistreated, or exploited by a caregiver. Data suggest that only 1 in 14 incidents are brought to the attention of authorities. The elderly are also vulnerable to financial exploitation, and estimates indicate there are around five million elderly victims of financial abuse each year [Source: GOP.gov, H.R. 5352 - Elder Abuse Victims Act of 2008, September 22, 2008].