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Disability-Related Bills Stemming From Phoenix Hacienda HealthCare Case To Get Hearings

Last December, two Arizona lawmakers issued a handful of recommendations aimed at keeping people with disabilities and senior citizens safe from abuse.

Since then, legislation has been drafted and some of those measures, will be getting a hearing this week.

Democratic Rep. Jennifer Longdon and Republican Rep. Tim Dunn each sponsored a bill stemming from the ad hoc committee they co-chaired last year.

The committee was formed after an incapacitated woman was raped and later gave birth to a baby at the Hacienda HealthCare long-term care facility in Phoenix.

The bipartisan committee examined what laws would be needed to keep vulnerable populations from abuse and neglect.

Longdon sponsored a billthat defines emotional abuse. Dunn’s measure would require an independent audit of Adult Protective Services.

Both bills will be heard later this week.

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Kathy Ritchie has 20 years of experience reporting and writing stories for national and local media outlets — nearly a decade of it has been spent in public media.