Unfortunately, nursing home abuse happens often enough that lawyers need to specialize in it. When loved ones put their elderly family members in a nursing home, they are entrusting the staff workers to take care of them properly and not harm them physically, emotionally or sexually. Sadly, nursing home residents across the country find themselves victims of nursing home abuse or negligence. Here at KBA Attorneys, we fight endlessly to get justice for our clients with family members who have been subjected to nursing home abuse.
Nursing Home Staff Taunt 91-year Old Dementia Resident
In December 2018, Margaret Collins was a resident at a nursing and rehab center in Chicago. The family of the 91-year-old woman suffering from dementia is choosing to sue the facility after they were made aware of a video that surfaced on the social app Snapchat. The video shows the resident being teased and taunted while she fought against the staffers trying to get her into a hospital gown.
In the video footage, the nursing staff was seen laughing and saying how Margaret hates wearing gowns. According to the lawsuit, which was filed in the circuit court of Cook County, the staff members knew that Margaret was terrified of hospital gowns. The daughter of Collins, Joan Biebel, verified in a statement that the staffers were deliberately bullying and teasing her mom for their own enjoyment and entertainment.
Once the video was seen, the family members of Margaret decided to notify the nursing home about the video. The two staff members who were involved in the video ended up getting suspended after an investigation. However, the allegation ended up being unsubstantiated and the two staffers were able to return to their jobs after being on leave for six days.
Margaret was eventually moved from the nursing facility, but she was terrified that there would be a repeated attack at her new facility. Her family ended up having to hire a private caregiver because her health began deteriorating quickly. Tom Collins, the son of Margaret Collins, stated that this incident ended up setting her back in her rehabilitation.
Collins Heartbroken Over Incident With Staffers
The family of Margaret Collins stated she was completely heartbroken about the situation. The two staffers involved in the incident were kids that she loved and enjoyed seeing each day. The two involved ended up confessing about being those responsible for the video. In January, the two staff members were charged with disorderly conduct in a nursing home. This comes with a misdemeanor charge and each was released after paying a bond of $75.
When the two staff members made their court appearance, they both stated they knew what they did was wrong and they made the video as an inside joke because of Collins’ dislike of hospital gowns. One of the staff members said he believed Collins was enjoying the playful banter. The other staffer confessed she sent the video to others who used to work for the facility, but stated she never posted the video on Snapchat.
Nursing Home Abuse Lawsuit
Similar to the cases we fight here at KBA Attorneys, the family of Margaret Collins decided to file a lawsuit because of the nursing facility’s failure to follow protocol which requires a report being filed with the state. The facility only filed a report after its employees were arrested and charged. The attorney representing the family of Margaret Collins wrote in a statement that the facility did not do what they are legally required to do in this type of situation.
Their lack of attention to what happened denied Collins’ family the ability to help Margaret and left her traumatized and without timely help. Simply put, Collins was subjected to elder abuse and nothing was done to prevent it or make it right. According to a report filed by the IDPH, the nursing home failed to successfully implement the ‘Abuse Prevention Policies’ by not ensuring its residents were free from emotional abuse by the staff. The report also stated that Margaret experienced shame and degradation because of the failure to follow prevention policies.
Getting Justice and Compensation
The family of Margaret Collins has decided to sue the nursing facility, its parent company and the two staffers involved for over $1 million in damages. When asked for a comment, the nursing facility decided to decline a response. It is not known if the nursing staffers involved in the incident decided to retain legal help. No attorneys were listed in any of the court documents.
Hire a Lawyer for Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
If you have a loved one in a nursing home and suspect they are being neglected or abused, it is your right to seek legal help for the matter. All of our attorneys here at KBA Attorneys know how emotionally draining this type of situation can be. We are here to get to the bottom of the abuse or neglect and get you and your loved one the justice and compensation deserved.
- KC Baker. “Nursing Home Sued After Staffers Allegedly Taunt Woman With Dementia, 91, in Snapchat Video”, People, https://people.com/crime/nursing-home-sued-woman-taunted-tape/. Accessed August 24, 2019.
- Trina Orlando. “Video Shows Aide at Glenview Nursing Home Taunting Elderly Woman”, NBC Chicago, https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/Video-Shows-Aide-at-Glenview-Nursing-Home-Taunting-Elderly-Woman-538536431.html. Accessed August 24, 2019.
- Danielle Garrand. “Nursing home workers accused of taunting 91-year-old woman with dementia in Snapchat video”, CBS News, https://www.cbsnews.com/news/nursing-home-staffers-lawsuit-nursing-home-workers-accused-of-taunting-91-year-old-woman-with-dementia-in-snapchat/. Accessed August 24, 2019.