A bill that toughens Iowa laws on elder abuse has cleared the Iowa Senate. The bill creates newly-defined crimes, like “elder abuse assault” and “financial exploitation of an older individual.”
“This bill is truly a landmark for Iowa’s seniors,” says Senator Mary Jo Wilhelm, a Democrat from Cresco
The bill is the culmination of a two-year study conducted by a 25-member task force.
“This bill may need some tweaking,” Wilhelm says, “but this is the first step in (filling) a void we’ve had in Iowa.”
The bill would define elder abuse as “”the abuse, neglect, or financial exploitation of an older individual.” If the bill becomes law, older Iowans who allege they’re being abused by relatives or care givers could go to court to get a no-contact order. The bill also defines “older” Iowans as anyone over the age of 60. The bill passed the Iowa Senate on a 49-0 vote and now goes to the Iowa House for consideration.