Florida seniors and disabled adults too frail to live on their own have been beaten, neglected and robbed by caregivers with criminal records.
A cancer patient at a Pompano Beach assisted living facility watched helplessly from bed as a nurse’s aide with a record for theft rifled through her handbag and stole $165.
“What are you doing with my bag?” a police report quoted her as saying. “You have no right. Put it down.”
A video camera caught an aide at a North Miami Beach group home for the disabled shoving a cerebral palsy patient face-first to the floor, busting her lip. The aide had previously pleaded guilty to aggravated assault and never should have been working there.
More than 3,500 people with criminal records — including rape, robbery and murder — have been allowed to work with the elderly, disabled and infirm through exemptions granted by the state the past two decades, a Sun Sentinel investigation found. Hundreds more slipped through because employers failed to check their backgrounds or kept them on the job despite their criminal past.
Florida has a patchwork of controls for checking caregivers of the elderly that seems to put more emphasis on protecting against embezzlement than safeguarding patients.
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Convicted Felongs Could Be Working in Your Mother’s or Father’s Nursing Home