Falsely accused of elder abuse.

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My mother has been in independent living for two years and I have tried to transfer her to assisted living with additional care in the same facility. Someone reported me to a senior organization for abuse for not taking proper care of her and getting her the care she needed. I was with her every minute I could, I bought her groceries every week, called her several times a day and made sure she got her three meals a day. I was to stay with her and did throughout each week. When I was not there I arranged for care checks every hour and had someone stay with her all night. The senior center gave me a deadline for changing her environment or threatened to have the state take over legal guardianship. I googled the state worker and found out that she is friends with neighbors in my mother's old neighborhood, (she moved out two years ago), that she had problems with. We even installed cameras to try to catch them harassing us(I was living with her for several years), banging on the house at all hours, putting things in the flower beds, ruining the wheel barrow etc. I think the state worker knows the neighbors and they may be behind all this. I called the state worker's superior and tried to convince her that I had taken very good care of my mother for the past ten years, especially since she moved into the senior facility, but she supported her worker and suggested I get a lawyer. I also mentioned the neighbors and that she should talk to the worker and find out what was going on. I forgot to mention that the neighbors were able to get into the senior facility my mother was in and knock on her door at all hours of the night and play the doorbell sound from their phone at four in the morning, when they knew I usually get up for work. The senior facility did nothing. This continued all two years she lived there. I could really use some advice from anyone about all this.

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Without more information, this story doesn't make any sense to me. I had my father-in-law in assisted living for short amount of time (short, because he got very sick, and came home to us
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hydrangealover, I'm finding this case a bit confusing, so correct me if I am misunderstanding.

Your mother has dementia.

She has been living in Independent Living on her own. Is that what the complaint about her care is about? Persons with dementia cannot safely live alone beyond the very earliest stages. Being with her "every minute I could" and seeing that she has meals, etc. may not be viewed as sufficient care if there are significant periods of time when she is alone. Your intentions are noble. They may not be sufficient (if that is what the complaint is about).

Was the lack of security one of the things considered inappropriate in your mother's environment? Was it suggested that you find her a place that had 24 hour care available and that people could not come in and bother her at all hours of the day and night?

What agency gave you a deadline for changing your mother's environment? Is that why you attempted to move her into Assisted Living? Why didn't that work out?

You've done the best you could for your mother. I am sorry that you are facing grief over it now. If you can explain in more detail what the current status of the problem is, what you are expected to do, and why you are having trouble doing it, perhaps we could be of more help.
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Elder abuse is actually more common than people may think, so my question to you not knowing you is how do we know the accusation isn't actually true? I'm actually dealing with the aftermath of having discovered a form of elder abuse after my dad's death, he had Alzheimer's. His POA was living with him and ended up stealing from him. Much to my horror, when I did my research I found out just how common it really is for elders to be abused in some way or another, sometimes even with multiple abuse types. Knowing what I know now and what I uncovered after dad's death I can't help but ask how do we know the accusation isn't true? We just don't know
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Another troll?
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You "forgot to mention" that for the two years that your mother has lived in this facility and you have routinely stayed with her there overnight you have both been subject to harassment by people conspiring with neighbours you previously had a dispute with; and in spite of this you are seeking to transfer your mother within this same facility.

Is that what you want to happen? Will that solve the alleged neglect issue?
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HydrangeaLover (and by the way, I LOVE hydrangeas!), some clarifications could help:

1. I don't need specific names, but I'm wondering what the "senior organization" and the "senior center" are, specifically. Are they government agencies? I think of the first as an NGO, perhaps for social purposes, and the second as a governmental offshoot of a city or township.

My experience is that some senior centers are worthless (such as the one in my city) but that others are excellent, have outreach programs, monitor MOW recipients, and are concerned for someone's welfare.

What I'm wondering is the level at which this organization operates, and its authority. I'm assuming it's not APS, is this correct? If so, that changes the dynamics.

2. You wrote that you were given a "deadline for changing her environment or threatened to have the state take over legal guardianship. " I don't want to pry or embarrass you, but were there issues with the IL facility, what demands or changes were required, etc.?

To threaten that the state would "take over legal guardianship" implies to me that the reporting organization is a governmental agency, and/or a mandated reporter.

I'm just trying to sort all this out.

3. There seems to have been a concerted effort by the neighbors to harass your mother. Do you know why? I know neighbors can be a pain; I've certainly experienced some, but am wondering why they'd feel so strongly and why a SW would become involved with them.

This sounds like a vendetta against your mother.

4. For the SW's superior to suggest you get a lawyer makes me wonder again what the allegations of the complaints against you are.

I am NOT trying to pry or embarrass you, but some of the facts seem to be integral to the complaints and it would help to know more about them.

5. Perhaps the lack of security at the senor facility is a concern, if "the neighbors were able to get into the senior facility my mother was in and knock on her door at all hours of the night and play the doorbell sound from their phone at four in the morning, when they knew I usually get up for work."

But I'm confused. Were the neighbors harassing your mother at the senior facility and you at your home, or at her home?

6. The senior facility took NO action for 2 years while people were entering at wee hours of the morning? Did you report them to anyone? I would think this lack of security would be considered neglect at some level. Is this a franchise operation? Privately owned? Did you document your complaints?

If a franchise, did you go to corporate HQ to complain? Even though each individual franchise is operated independently, it has to conform to corporate standards, rule and regulations, and I don't think that would include nocturnal harassment.

If there are any online advertisements of safety at this IL, that would seem to me to be false or misrepresentation, but I think it's probably a tort rather than a criminal action. I'm not sure about this aspect.

You could complain to the BBB, but from what I've read, it's essentially toothless.

Where is your mother living now?

7. I hate to raise this issue, but I can't help wondering. Is this racially based. Are you a person of color or of foreign nationality in a lily white community? The neighbors' action sounds like harassment to me.

There's something about the situation that I feel I'm missing but just can't "put my finger on it."
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When you say "the senior center gave me a deadline..." do you mean the place where she lives or the agency investigating the complaint?

Also, did they give you anything in writing saying what changes you need to make regarding your mothers care?

Lastly - what is the agency where the state worker works?
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Start by contacting the ALs supervisors and insist they improve their security. No one should be able to walk into an AL at any time. An AL is full of vulnerable elders. If necessary threaten the AL with legal action if they fail to protect their residents.
I am afraid you may actually need a lawyer which of course costs money. Do you have acess to Legal Aid. You can probably apply to the Court for an Order of Protection against these neighbors for both yourself and Mom. Can you document any of the things they are doing. Do you know when they are harassing Mom during the night? Could you hide out somewhere and photograph them knocking on her door in the middle of the night. Even photograph their car in the parking lot if your phone can date stamp your photographs. Make sure you include the license plate and surrounding that identify the location.
I think I would envolve the police at this point too especially if you can't afford legal help.
Find out who supervises the Senior Centers workers. It may be your State Health Department and they would have to look into your complaint. You could even tell the health deep about the IL's lack of security for their residents. Don't know if ILs come under the Sate Health Depts jurisdiction maybe some one else does

Garden Artist do you know?
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