[Text from Zap2It.com, video from CNN.com]
Acting legend Mickey Rooney, 90, spoke Wednesday (March 3) about his experience with elder abuse, asking the Senate committee to stop the chronic emotional, physical, sexual and financial abuse so many elderly people suffer at the hands of their family and caregivers.
Rooney has filed a restraining order against his stepson and stepdaughter, claiming emotional and financial abuse. Rooney wants Congress to pass a law to make elder abuse a specific crime.
According to CNN, after the hearing, committee Chairman Sen. Herb Kohl of Wisconsin introduced legislation that would create an Office of Elder Justice within the Department of Justice, which would help coordinate response by law enforcement to elder abuse reports.
"For years I suffered silently. I didn't want to tell anybody. I couldn't muster the courage and you have to have courage," says Rooney. "I needed help and I knew I needed it. Even when I tried to speak up, I was told to shut up and be quiet."
Dr. Mark Lachs, director of geriatrics at New York Presbyterian, and Marie-Therese Connolly, direct of Life Long Justice, testified that much adult abuse is unreported and that crimes are perpetrated against the elderly that we would never stand for if they were perpetrated against children or animals
Photo/Video credit: CNN