WFAA Investigation Into Criminal Caretakers Features Carlson Attorneys
Carlson attorneys Ernest Tosh and J.T. Borah were featured in a six-month WFAA investigation which uncovered an ugly truth: Nearly 200 aids certified to work in North Texas nursing homes have serious or violent criminal histories.
News 8 investigator Charlotte Huffman spent months analyzing state data and made the disturbing discovery: violent criminals are legally working as certified nursing aides (CNAs), having daily interactions with residents.
Because of loopholes in Texas regulations, you can plead guilty to serious and violent crimes, yet still, become certified as a nurse aide.
“For the nursing home industry, it’s all about money,” said Ernest Tosh, an attorney who handles nursing home abuse cases across the United States. He’s known as an expert in the field.
“It’s about who can we get to do this job, a very hard, difficult job, at the least amount of money,” he said. “Who can you pay less than someone who has a felony conviction and can’t get a job elsewhere.”
One of the biggest issues patients face because of this loophole is their inability to properly communicate once abuses have occurred.
“They have dementia, Alzheimer’s, symptoms that cause them to have a lack of communication,” said Tosh.
“They can’t express exactly what happened, which is why violent offenders should be screened out from working in these facilities,” he added.
“They can physically or sexually assault an individual and there be no repercussions because that individual can’t identify them or communicate what happened.”
Despite contradictions from nursing homes, Borah believes that these companies can and should afford to staff their facilities to the level they are required.
“I think our state needs to recognize that nursing homes are not as poor as they claim to be,” said J.T. Borah, an Austin attorney show specializes in nursing home abuse and neglect. “If the industry were to finance and staff at the level they were supposed to, they could afford better employees. They could have better applicants.”
And families of victims agree.
To view the full five-piece series, follow the link below.
- Written by Jill Fowler