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Government Legislation

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The following is a critical review of legislation currently in place.

The Canadian Human Rights Declaration proclaims that “everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principals of fundamental justice,” however as one ages, one’s rights diminish. Justice becomes an elusive hope for the elderly pioneers of this country.

We wish to help you understand the severe problems of injustice endured by the elderly by calling your attention to the legislation which has been put forward in Alberta over a period of 29 years. Legislation which has been prepared by Legislative Council lawyers on the instructions of the Justice Department of the Crown in Right of Alberta; legislation which purports to protect the elderly while in fact it is largely ineffective, unworkable and even discriminatory.

Alberta Legislature

Indeed these are Charter issues.

1972 Health Facilities Review Committee Act

Health Facilities Review Committee which administers this impotent and immoral piece of legislation, is a Government appointed body, responsible for about 180 health-care institutions in Alberta. Most appointees have no background in healthcare field.

Their stated mission “is to ensure that quality, care, treatment and standards of accommodation are maintained in health care facilities in Alberta”
-Health Facilities Report, January 2000.

For over 30 years, government leaders and personnel have used this committee to field complaints, and mislead the public into believing that the quality of care of the frail, elderly in nursing homes and other elder care facilities is being monitored. Further, the public is misled by the committee that purports to intervene in regard to elder abuse and neglect issues when in fact they have no power to enforce regulations, recommendations or impact decisions.

Section 10 of the Act does not allow the Committee access to medical or financial records;* therefore their reports are superficial, anecdotic hearsay that would never stand up in a Court of Law. They report to the Committee Chairman who is an elected MLA, presently Mr. Bob Maskel MLA Edmonton Meadowlark, who replaced Ms. Mary O’Neil of St. Albert, Vice Chairman being Mr. Lloyd Snelgrove MLA Vermillion-Lloydminster.

Section #16 of the Act does not require the annual report to the Minister of Health and Wellness, which is copied to the Legislature, to record the reality of elder care facilities but it is to “submit a report summarizing its activities in that year“.

Their annual Report to the Legislature fails to reflect the reality of elder care facilities.

*“unless the patient or his guardian gives his consent to those records being viewed” Some elderly persons do not have a formal guardian nor may they be able to give consent.

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1998 Protection For Persons in Care Act

The Protection For Persons in Care Act appears to be an embellished version of the Health Facilities Review Committee Act of 1972. The Protection For Persons in Care Act was passed in 1995 and proclaimed on January 5, 1998. After a quarter of a century the government has again provided us with a seriously flawed piece of legislation that purports to protect vulnerable seniors of this Province but is not able to do so.

The name itself, Protection For Persons in Care Act Protection For Persons in Care Act (PPCA) is a misrepresentation inferring that it protects all Albertans who are in care when in fact all Albertans in private care facilities and even some who are in public facilities such as Alberta Hospital Edmonton and Alberta Hospital Ponoka are not included. Furthermore, in some large facilities such as the 700 person Kensington Shepherds Care, Edmonton, a complaint was dismissed because according to the dismissal report, the particular room that the victimized senior was in — was private.

With encroaching privatization, there are more and more large facilities across Alberta like the Terra Losa, Edmonton, which has a locked Alzheimer unit or the Dr. Hemstock of Lloydminster, AB. which do not fall under the Protection For Persons in Care Act.

In fact, the Terra Losa is licensed by the city of Edmonton with a “rental accommodation” license and the Dr. Hemstock has a “catering”license posted.

In Summary, the Limitations of The Protection For Persons in Care Act are:

  1. Impotent, government appointed body which fields complaints, investigators often having no background in health care field.
  2. Has no power to enforce regulations, recommendations or impact decisions. They investigate and report to the Office of the Minister, the Minister cannot be held accountable by the Officeof the Ombudsman.
  3. Section 7 of the Act prohibits investigators to access medical or financial records. The medical and clinical records of persons in care are private and will not be examined with out the consent of the person or their legal guardian, though the person may not be able to give consent. According to one interpretation, the Act prohibits the investigator from applying for a Court Order to gain access. Therefore their reporting is superficial, anecdotic hearsay which would never stand up in a Court of Law.
  4. Investigations are carried out by persons on contract to the government. Because they are not government employees, they cannot be investigated by the Office of the Ombudsman or in any way held accountable for their reporting.
  5. The legislation is contradictory (does not make common sense.) Consider this: Section 2 (1) states that it is:
    “mandatory for people (every individual or service provider) who believe abuse is occurring to report it”
    Section 2(5) specifies a penalty for failing to do so in all instances of elder abuse.
    However:

    1. As noted above, many facilities both large and small, private and public, do not fall under the jurisdiction of the Act. If the complaint fails to fall within the authority of the Act, the complaint is summarily dismissed even though there may be clear evidence of elder abuse or neglect.
    2. There are those who consistently fail to report elder abuse and neglect such as nursing staff, physicians, physiotherapists, undertakers or officers of the Public Examiners office. Has anyone been fined or jailed?
    3. In dismissing a complaint made to the Protection For Persons in Care Act Office, Report of a Decision Respecting Complaint , No. # 3537, a Ph.D. Seniors, Deputy Minister, wrote on May 21, 2002 “The dismissal of alleged abuse, per the definition of abuse in the Act, does not indicate that the care or practices that occurred are acceptable”
  6. The final Report of Decision contains recommendations; the investigated agency is not obligated to implement any of the recommendations. According to a government publication explaining the Act, “It should be emphasized that the recommendations are simply recommendations.”
  7. The Complaint is not recorded such as a 911 call would be.
    1. The complaint is made verbally to the Intake person, then must be
    2. repeated to the person who assigns the complaint and
    3. repeated to the investigations person. Because of the shoddy, hearsay, intake process, PPCA personnel may accuse the complainant prior to, during and after the process, of not having made certain statements or of not having included certain issues in their complaint.
  8. The legislation requires no mandatory Fatality Inquiry into the sudden death which occurs in an elder care facility contrary to a federal prison sudden death.
  9. The Protection For Persons in Care Office is open 8:00AM to 4:00 PM, closed during the lunch hour, for several weeks during the Christmas season and other holidays so frequently no one is accessible to accept complaints.
  10. The Report of a Decision Respecting Complaint is a report which frequently fails to address the issue or distorts the issue. It does not contain the name of the victimized person, is vague and sometimes dishonest. Complaints which we have made, have been trivialized, dismissed, disregarded, lost or never investigated.

According to the Protection For Persons in Care Act – Alberta Regulation 159/98

applies to a person residing in an institution or organization operated by the Government of Alberta or receives part or all of its operating funds, directly or indirectly, from the Government of Alberta nevertheless, the following institutions and organizations are not included:

  1. Alberta Hospital Edmonton;
  2. Alberta Hospital Ponoka;
  3. Raymond Care Centre;
  4. Claresholm Care Centre;
  5. a housing accommodation as defined in the Alberta Housing Act; (seniors apartment housing where the government is the Landlord.)
  6. a correctional institution as defined by the Corrections Act.

Note: Most of the above are government owned Institutions or government subsidized and yet the seniors in these facilities are not considered persons in care.

The Act provides no appeal mechanism!

A review of this legislation was undertaken in spring of 2002. In March of 2003, a Report on the Review of the Protection For Persons in Care Act was submitted to the Legislative Review Committee at which time we made a strong objection to the Honourable Mr. Gene Zwozdesky, Minister of Community Development concerning the proposed recommendations of the Report.

We strongly stated to him, that:

“if the recommendations are accepted, it will mean that the Protection For Persons in Care Act will continue to be an embellished version of the unenforceable, ineffective, unethical Health Facilities Review Committee Act of 1972 and continue to provide little or no protection to vulnerable Albertans.”

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1972 The Social Care Facilities Review Committee Act

The Social Care Facilities
Review Committee
which
administers this piece of legislation is a Government, appointed body
which is mandated to investigate mistreatment in adult daycare centers,
group homes and some unique lodges. They field complaints, and mislead
the public into believing that the quality of care for the frail,
elderly in such facilities is being monitored and that their Committee
can intervene in regard to elder abuse and neglect issues when in fact
they have no power to enforce regulations, recommendations or
impact decisions. Sections 10 and 11 of the Act disallow access medical
or financial records. They report to the committee Chairman which is an
elected MLA, presently the Chairman is Ms. Cindy Ady, MLA Calgary-Shaw,
Vice-
Chairman is Ms. Jean Wilkinson.

Their reporting is superficial, anecdotic hearsay. The Committee has
never been listed in the phone book.

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1972 The Alberta Human Rights and Citizenship Commission

The Alberta Human Right
and Citizenship Commision proclaims that Alberta is for ALL Albertans,
but the under girding
legislation contradicts this. It would probably amaze most Albertans to
know that our elderly pioneers are not protected by the legislation of
the Alberta Human Rights Commission
in the area of services in which they are most
vulnerable.

Although the Alberta Human Rights Commission
will act on complaints of discrimination because of race, religious
beliefs, colour, sex, ancestry, and place of origin, they are not
mandated to protect the rights of the aged. Alberta’s Act does not
prevent discrimination in obtaining goods, service and
accommodation.

What does this mean to the ordinary Albertan? Eviction without notice!
In another matter, in most Lodges, it is POLICY that residents, if they
are ill in bed, do not have to be served a breakfast tray, tea or any
nourishment. Seniors must come to the dining area. They must get up and
get the liquids or nourishments or do without. In central
Alberta, an employee was dismissed because she served breakfast to an
elderly Lodge resident who was sick in bed.

In a nursing home, an elder can be chemically restrained; psychotropic
drugs can be prescribed and administered without the informed consent
of the resident, the resident’s guardian or other authorized
representative. A nursing home resident can be permanently relegated
to bed, without the informed consent of the
resident, the resident’s guardian or other authorized representative.

A continent elder can be diapered without consent and told to use
his/her diaper. A story emanated from Calgary concerning a strapping
six foot man who had been institutionalized. He
was crying inconsolably. It turned out that he had been diapered, given
a laxative and told to use his diaper (soil himself).

When personal belongings are stolen from lodge or nursing home
residents, nothing is done; in facilities where we have received a
complaint or made a complaint, no protocol was in place. Elders and
family members are informed that items are “missing.”
As a matter of fact most residents are afraid to complain that theft
has occurred. It is our experience that if you make complaints in an
elder care facility, you may be disciplined, evicted to a mental health
ward or even declared incompetent.

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1980 Dependant Adult Act D32

The Act sharply curtails and strips the
elderly person of all
his/her rights and fails to protect and provide physical, mental,
emotional/financial safety and protection for the dependent adult. The
dependant adult becomes a non-person and is referred to in the court as
the estate
.

The Act does not require that the proposed dependant adult be notified
that his/her monies/estate is being taken over by a trustee.

As the Court appointed guardian or trustee exercise
their authority, there is no onus of duty of care to
the dependent adult to:

  1. provide the necessities of life
  2. provide social and mental stimulation
  3. provide safe, ethical nursing care where required.
  4. ensure that the dependant adult is not physically or chemically restrained
  5. spend the dependant adult’s money to ameliorate and benefit the dependant adult’s life

The court appointed guardian/trustee is seldom held accountable for his/her failure.

When a Trustee fails to pass accounts (brings his accounts to the court for examination), frequently, he/she

  1. is not held in Contemptof Courtby the Court, when Orders of the Court have been breached.
  2. is seldom disciplined by the Law Society in the case of one of their own members.

The accounting standards for the Office of the Public Trustee are very relaxed and do not rise to a level required of ordinary
citizens in supplying ANNUAL Income Tax Returns. It appears that the
“passing of account” may be
only required once every six years and that this process does
not involve any independent audit, save and
except the judge to view as he sees fit. This
suggests that the framers of the Dependant Adult Act
in Alberta have presented a very misleading document to the Public.

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1980 Fatality Inquiries Act Chapter F9

The Act states that:

Deaths that require notification . . . to a
medical examiner or an investigator:
(2) (c) deaths that occur as the result of violence, accident
or suicide;
(e) deaths that may have occurred as the result of improper or negligent treatment by any person;
(20) The Chief Medical Examiner may at any time
(a) direct a medical examiner to make an investigation into any death at any place in Alberta.

Besides
reporting to the Medical Examiner, the Act
makes no requirement to hold an Inquiry in regard to the sudden or
violent death of a senior resident of an elder care facility.

In one instance, a male resident of a private nursing home, 1988, was
severely scalded in a tub of hot water. He died two weeks later at the
University Hospital. The Public Examiner’s Office informed
us that they did not interview anyone except some personnel at the
nursing home. This was the same nursing home where, a year previously,
a man had been beaten to death by a long time violent resident; and
where also, another elderly man had taken suicide by jumping from the
third floor window of the nursing home, in no instance was a Fatality
Inquiry held. Later, a despondent lady also took her life from the same
third floor of the home.

A horrific 1989 scalding of a senior who was in care in another
facility which resulted in immediate death of the senior, also did not
result in a Fatality Inquiry. Silence surrounds the
violent death of elderly persons.

1980 Medical Profession Act

The Medical Profession
governs the College
of Physicians and Surgeons
which allows it to be a
self-governing and according to its legislation, its’ members
cannot be held accountable by the public.

The College
has failed to deal with such issues as the failure of
those physicians who visit nursing homes and auxiliary hospitals who
fail to visit their patients though making regular entries in the
patient files. For those entries, the physician receives payment. For
example, one senior complained to us that she had never seen her
doctor. This lady, like many, had been declared to have dementia,
although we were not fully convinced of this. Hence we inquired of the
charge nurse as to the name of the physician and would he have visited
this resident. The reply was that this physician visited the facility
between 6:00 and 7:00AM and therefore the resident would probably not
have been seen by him.

These physicians do not take responsibility for the neglect which some
nursing home residents suffer such as bedsores, injuries due to neglect
/ falls. A physician, whose patient had developed an advanced
3″diameter bedsore which exposed the spine, had caused the
elderly
person to have generalized septicemia. In his office, the physician
informed us, that he had no knowledge of the bedsore.

We have documentation that demonstrates that at times, physicians act
as the enforcers in a systemic culture of neglect.

Detailed, documented complaints made to the College of
physicians and Surgeons
have been trivialized and serious
issues disregarded.

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1984 Nursing Profession Act

The Act was granted to the
Alberta Association of Registered Nurses (AARN) in 1984.

The Alberta Association of Registered Nurses is
self governing and its’ members cannot be held accountable by
the public.

In 1984, the AARN discontinued confirming the
status of
nurses by way of employer’s submission of personnel lists and
also
deleted the requirement for orientation to Canadian nursing. This
regressive legislation places the onus to have a permit or registration
on the individual “nurse” and on the employer.

An out of province/country person may qualify for RN
status or Certified Graduate Nurse (CGN) by
obtaining a permit without having written any provincial examination.

We have knowledge of complaints of elder abuse including a fourteen
page complaint of elder abuse, which was made to the Alberta
Association of Registered Nurses
which was dismissed without
being investigated.
Should the professional association be held culpable for the deaths and
injuries which resulted after their failure to discipline their members.

We maintain that there is strong failure, to provide safe, ethical,
compassionate, nursing care to clients in many elder care facilities
which should be the goal of organized nursing in Alberta. Therefore,
we have asked the professional association, the Alberta
Association of Registered Nurses
to
take on the primary role of advocacy for those in care and confront the
significant issues which result in less than safe, ethical,
compassionate, nursing care to vulnerable clients.

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1985 Nursing Home Act

The Nursing Home Act has minimal requirements. The
regulations have not been upgraded for over twenty years.

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1985 Criminal Code

The Criminal Code is not applied. It clearly states:


Section 215
(1) Everyone is under a legal duty

(c) to provide necessaries of life to a person under his charge if that person
(i) is unable, by reason of detention, age illness, mental disorder or other cause, to withdraw himself from that charge and
(ii) is unable to provide himself with necessaries of life.

(2) Everyone commits an offence who, being under a legal duty within the meaning of subsection (1), fails without lawful excuse, the proof of which lies on him, to perform the duty, if

(a) the failure to perform the duty endangers the life of the person to whom the duty is owed, or causes or is likely to cause the health of that person to be endangered permanently; or
(b) with respect to a duty imposed by paragraph (1)(c), the failure to perform the duty endangers the life of the person to whom the duty is owed or causes or is likely to cause the health of that person to be injured permanently.

(3) Everyone who commits an offence under subsection (2) is guilty of

(a) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years; or
(b) an offence punishable on summary conviction.

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1980 Alberta Mental Health Act

The
physician / psychiatrist, has a powerful quasi-judicial
position in society by virtue of the privileges conferred on him by the
state and the College of Physicians and Surgeons in that he has the
legal authority to detain lawful citizens behind locked doors.

Therefore, he has an ethical and moral obligation, to safeguard the
processes which are carried out in a hospital for the mentally ill and
to safeguard all vulnerable, elderly or unwilling participants who
become part of that system”.

The Form 1 Admission
Certificate of the Mental Health Act (c.
M-13.1, S.A. 1988) Section 2, is information obtained from
hearsay and requires the physician to fill in the following:


“I have formed my opinion (ii) on the following
facts communicated to me by others”

“This hearsay opinion
(evidence inadmissible as testimony) cannot be challenged according to
the Mental Health Act – Part 7, Section #5a.”

For example: A senior had complained about blood
sausage which had
been served to eat at the lodge where she resided. She attended at the
North Edmonton Health Center, and then was transported to Alberta
Hospital by ambulance. Prior to her admission, a psychiatrist on
September 29, 1999 filled out the Form 1 as
follows, although he had never interviewed, assessed or even met her.

In the Form I, he wrote that he “observed the
following facts” @1:30 PM:

Pt. is paranoid, delusional and extremely
distressed. She speaks
of food at the lodge being “rotten, contaminated, with blood
all over
it”. She displays depressive symptoms and has not been
compliant with
treatment.

A complaint concerning
this physician’s untruthful,
written statement recorded on a legal document, which abrogated this
person’s right to self determination, was made to the Alberta
College of Physicians and Surgeons, but the complaint was
summarily dismissed.

The Review Panel Hearing which is an
appeal mechanism for
detainees, is conducted by a lawyer/judge. There is no recording of the
hearing, it is an anecdotal, “he said, she said”
forum. Four
panel members and fifteen minutes later may determine whether the
detainee will obtain his/her freedom or spend further months behind
locked doors at the facility. The hearing which we attended was
frightening, the attending psychiatrist made allegations about a car
accident which we knew were not true. We had a police report verifying
the detainee’s account.

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1990 Patient Advocate Regulation under the Mental Health Act

Section 3. Power
to act on a complaint relating to a formal patient.
Unfortunately most admissions to Alberta Hospital are encouraged to
sign a voluntary admission Form which makes them
ineligible for advocacy by the Patient Advocate.

We are aware that persons are frequently detained
in breach of the Mental Health Act, by means of the Voluntary Admission
Form. The large
numbers of voluntary patients at Alberta Hospital,
as cited by the Acting Medical Director of the Alberta
Hospital Edmonton, bears this out. The practice of the Voluntary
Admission Form
is built into the system. Professional nursing staff cooperate in this
deception which allows professionals to illegally detain vulnerable
persons.

The signing of this Form by a patient, declares him/her to be a
voluntary patient. A voluntary
patient, cannot appeal for advocacy because allegedly he/she is being
hospitalized by choice. In 1987, the Office of the Ombudsman
had jurisdiction to receive complaints from patients at the Alberta
Hospital Edmonton. Since 1990, the Patient Mental
Health Advocate has been given jurisdiction to assist and
investigate concerns of certified persons.

During a Fatality Inquiry Hearing (Norregard), a psychiatrist gave the
following answer when asked concerning the “purpose and
function” of the Alberta Hospital Edmonton.
He makes strong reference to the voluntary admission process:
(Transcript, dated July 13/99, page 88)

Q: Could you, Doctor, describe for us the purpose and function of
Alberta Hospital Edmonton?

The response:

“Alberta Hospital Edmonton is one of 14 designated facilities in the Province that is able to admit psychiatric patients. It is designated in order to be able to take certified patients, that is formal patients under the Mental Health Act. We also admit voluntary patients. Approximately half of our admissions are voluntary. In other words, the patient agrees to be admitted for treatment. The other half on admission are detained in some way, usually under one or more certificates of the Mental Health Act and after admission that group of patients, almost two thirds of them at each month end are, in fact, voluntary.”

The response would seem to indicate that the purpose and
function of the hospital is to detain persons. The Alberta
Hospital Edmonton and Ponoka are not
included under the Protection For Persons in Care Act.
The response reflects that he is very much aware of the Voluntary
admission process, participates
in the process, and even dares to explain the
process of admitting and detaining persons in a process which is a
breach of the Mental Health Act.

We have knowledge of vulnerable persons who have been detained under
the Mental Health Act, who have had their rights
revoked, been medicated, threatened, disciplined and detained behind
locked doors

  • “no therapy, no compassion”.
    Such detainees have few advocates, and those advocates who they may
    have, have little understanding of the process by which the elderly
    person is being confined.

    In a number of situations where we advocated for detainees who had been
    certified under the Mental Health Act, the detainees were abruptly told
    to leave the facility. The Mental Health Certificates were not
    discharged and no apology was offered to the persons that had been
    detained and who had to endure a frightening ordeal behind locked doors.

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    1986/87 Health Disciplines Act

    The
    Health Disciplines Act was
    passed which opened the flood gates of the health care system to
    untrained, unskilled workers. Previously the administration of
    medications, IV injections, the drawing of blood, patient assessment,
    etc. was the exclusive domain of registered nurses, interns or even
    doctors.

    In 1986, we strongly objected to this legislation because we perceived
    it to be an intended “final solution”
    regarding the care of the frail, dependent elderly, cheap, unskilled
    labour, persons hired off the street. Our predictions came true. In
    some instances, kitchen staff are administering medications.

    During recent labour negotiations, managers of some Alberta
    long term care facilities are attempting to cut the requirement to have
    any RN’s on duty.
    Indeed, care standards for seniors and infirm people are constantly
    being reduced, it strongly appears that there is deliberate de-skilling
    – dumbing down.

    The Office
    of the Ombudsman has
    no
    authority to act on behalf of elderly citizens or the behaviour of
    caregivers in Long Term care Facilities.
    He can only intervene when an individual has a grievance against a
    government agency or government employee. Because of the move to
    regionalization, the entire long Term Care System is
    beyond the reach of the Office of the Ombudsman. He
    has no power to investigate the conduct of elected Ministers of
    government.

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    1991 Legal Profession Act

    The
    Legal Profession Act governs the Law Society of
    Alberta. The Law Society is
    self governing and its’ members cannot be held accountable by
    the public. The Law Society according to
    their own Web Site had 7442 members, received 3742 complaints from the
    public in 2003.

    We have been informed by the Justice Department that even though a
    lawyer may speak untruthfully in Court, he cannot be held
    accountable or charged with perjury because he is “not
    under oath”. Far too often, lawyers, by
    their written Orders and Court submissions, prove
    to be the enforcers in Surrogate Court matters,
    denying the rights of elderly persons. There is systemic failure by the
    Law Society to discipline members when
    they have acted improperly and are in contravention of their Act, –
    PART 3, Section 47(1) – CONDUCT OF MEMBERS.

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    1992 Residential Tenancies Act

    This
    Act
    governs tenancy agreements and often discriminates against
    seniors in that it does not apply to or protect those seniors residing
    in nursing homes as defined in the Nursing Homes Act
    or protect those in Senior Citizens Lodges operated
    by the Government of Alberta or by a Foundation
    incorporated under the Senior Citizens Housing Act 1980
    or a social care facility licensed under the Social
    Care Facilities Licensing Act.

    Seniors can be evicted, without notice from an elder care facility.

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    1994 Alberta Housing Act

    This
    Act
    decrees that when older persons apply to move into subsidized
    senior’s apartment facilities, they must declare
    their total assets, income and holdings.
    Having to declare all this information to persons who frequently are
    unskilled and unbonded, often persons hired off the street, is a
    frightening prospect to many seniors. The value of the
    senior’s assets
    and income will determine how much they will pay for the rental unit.
    Seniors may have to pay some inappropriate payment because they are
    seniors, because they have carefully saved money for retirement years
    and are now penalized by having to pay inappropriate rent.

    The rules for qualifying applicants for seniors’
    self-contained housing are contained in the Social
    Housing Accommodation Regulation of the Alberta
    Housing Act. This regulation was also drafted to be
    consistent with a federal/provincial cost-sharing agreement.

    Certainly, prospective tenants on the free market would not tolerate
    this declaration process. It is a disturbing, demeaning humiliation,
    violation of privacy and a blatant abuse of the human rights of an
    older person.

    Prior to the introduction of The Alberta Housing Act, those who
    operated seniors’ housing
    facilities had to provide monthly statements to government
    for auditing and review. Since then, the governing
    administrative body of Municipal Affairs (now under Ministry of
    Seniors)
    changed from a monitoring role to an advisory role.
    This has resulted in breach of legislation, financial and other abuses
    by seniors’ housing management bodies; i.e. failure
    to return damage deposits.

    Surrogate Court

    The
    Court does not demand accountability if “Officers of
    the Court” present untruths to the Court, if there
    is failure to pass accountsor
    if there is disregard for the rights of seniors. Seniors can be
    declared incompetent, their assets seized, without a Court Hearing.
    They do not have to be notified that their estate has been taken over
    by the Office of the Public Trustee.

    In regard to these disturbing accounts of injustice, we ask you to
    decide whether there is legislation which protects the elderly.
    Consider, why after over three decades, our legislation is much the
    same it was.

    Seniors have been disenfranchised; they are
    frequently disengaged
    from the basic privileges of citizenship. THESE ARE CHARTER ISSUES.

    The deep rooted abuse of the elderly exists
    because it is allowed, promoted and even validated by:

    • impotent, unenforceable legislation which in many instances
      discriminates against the elderly.
    • legislation that legislates only the most basic standards and care.
    • Ministers and agencies of government who publish and volunteer
      misinformation.
    • politicized self-governing professional associations who act in
      violation of their own governing legislation and who dismiss and
      silence issues of elder abuse.
    • Judicial Council which has no mandate to review or impact the
      decisions of Judges.
    • existing legislation which is not upheld, applied or enforced.
    • the failure to bring to accountability and discipline abusers, the
      failure to apply the criminal code which gives a loud clear societal
      message that those who harm or neglect elderly persons can act with
      impunity; that it is in fact acceptable, to abuse and neglect
      vulnerable persons.

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    Our conscience must be stirred!

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