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Elder Abuse Advocates Plead For Legislators To Act

SAINT PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) -- Family members and advocates are pleading lawmakers to take action against elder abuse in Minnesota.

After months of research, members of Elder Voice Family Advocates delivered a white boxes full of detailed reports Monday morning to state senators in St. Paul.

The group has been working to put together a list of the elder abuse investigations sparked by complaints to the state.

They claim nearly 1,800 complaints over the past three years were recorded and posted on the state's website -- that's only a fraction of the more than 24,000 complaints received in 2017 alone.

The report contains some shocking stories of elder abuse, everything from finding maggots in open wounds to sexual assault.

Advocates are hoping once lawmakers see just how big this problem is, they will do something about it.

"They will be able to easily look up every abuse case that we could find that happened within their district and they will come to understand that this is not rare," said Jean Hourigan Peters, vice president of Elder Voice Family Advocates.

This all comes after a scathing report last month revealed the state agency in charge with investigating elder abuse failed to look at thousands of allegations and complaints.

Gov. Mark Dayton later ordered the Department of Human Services to intervene in the Health Department to help fix the crisis.

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