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Public Inquiry Request to Address Competency Issues

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Hand Delivered

May 9, 2008

The Honourable Ms. Alison Redford, QC

Minister of Justice and Attorney General

Room #403, Legislature Building

10800 – 97 Avenue, Edmonton, AB T5K 2B6

Dear Madam Minister:

REQUEST FOR A PUBLIC INQUIRY TO ADDRESS THE FOLLOWING:

A physician, has a powerful quasi-judicial position in society by virtue of the reliance on his assessments by the judicial system, in that his assessment can lead to the detaining of lawful citizens behind locked doors, and removal of property and human rights.

The current standards required for a physician in the performance of his assessment are not well defined. We believe that if the judiciary is to rely on a physician’s assessment, specific standards and criteria must be developed for the exercise and documentation of a physician’s assessment. These should include cross examination of the physician or documentation/ affidavit testimony which outlines the process which was followed as well as practical avenues for the appeal and review of that assessment.

Many seniors who at one time may have suffered illness but have recovered, are being abused through the process that declares them incompetent to look after their finances and personal decisions.

Therefore we are again asking your government to hold a Public Inquiry that should include those Alberta citizens who are detained behind locked doors who wish to be heard to:

  1. allow hearings across the province of persons who have been victimized by a process that has no safe, definitive guidelines rto ensure a fair, ethical assessment
  2. establish legislated criteria and standards to govern the assessment protocol, that recognizes constitutional rights and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms
  3. establish practical avenues of accessible, appeal protocol
  4. establish penalties for those who are in breach of legislation
  5. a definitive timeline in regard to these undertakings

Under the Government Organization Act Chapter G-10, the Minister “shall ensure that Public Affairs are administered according to law.”

In most areas relating to seniors, there are no governing protective laws which allows arbitrary decision making and abuse.

We ask your kind attention to these most pressing matters.

We respectfully ask to be in receipt of your response in regard to this matter by the 2nd of June, 2008.

Thank you.

Respectfully submitted,

Elder Advocates of Alberta Society

CC:

Hand delivered

Honourable Mr. Dave Hancock, Government House leader

Honourable Mary Anne Jablonski, Minister for Seniors and Community Support Services

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