Frankfort, KY: While addressing Kentucky’s largest seniors group at the Capitol Rotunda Thursday, Governor Ernie Fletcher applauded members of the Kentucky House of Representatives for the passage of HB 298, legislation addressing elder maltreatment.
“Preventing elder maltreatment has been a priority of AARP for a long time, and I want you to know that it’s a priority for my administration as well,” Governor Fletcher said. “We owe it to our seniors to protect them to the very best of our ability.”
Sponsored by Rep. Jimmie Lee, D-Elizabethtown, the bill encourages better reporting of incidents of maltreatment, improves accountability and interagency coordination, and requires better training for victims’ advocates, caseworkers, judicial officials and law enforcement. Sen. Katie Stine, R-Fort Thomas, has taken the lead on this legislation in the Senate.
Governor Fletcher told AARP members and advocates gathered in the Rotunda that HB 298 is an example of action – not just rhetoric – about collaboration and bipartisanship.
“Since last summer, people inside and outside state government, and from both sides of the aisle, have worked together to produce legislation that will protect Kentucky’s seniors from abuse and exploitation. We’re not just talking about bipartisanship and collaboration—we’re displaying it and producing results for the Commonwealth,” Governor Fletcher said.
Rep. Lee said, “Legislators, advocates, and administration officials have all put a lot of time and effort into HB 298 this year. It’s an issue that some of us have worked on for a long time, and I think we finally have the commitment in the Governor’s office and General Assembly to reach our goal.”
The bill now moves to the Senate, where Governor Fletcher is calling for immediate action.
“I am very pleased with the bill passed by the House last night, and I’m hopeful that the Senate will send it to me very soon for my signature. Our seniors deserve nothing less,” said Governor Fletcher.