Nursing homes are charged with the responsibility of maintaining the safety of all residents, both from abusive staff members and from other residents with violent tendencies. When a resident gets sexually assaulted, the nursing home can be held liable for damages through a nursing home abuse lawsuit.
Sadly, poorly run nursing homes create an easy environment for sexual predators to prey on victims. In many understaffed nursing homes, sexual predators can move about freely through the facility while flying under the radar. Furthermore, many nursing home rape and sexual assault victims are either unable to communicate the event to loved ones and other staff members, or they may choose not to disclose the incident out of fear of future violent attacks.
Nursing Home Rape Committed by Staff Members
The Nursing Home Reform Act of 1979 requires all nursing homes to carefully screen prospective staff members to ensure they are fit to care for residents. Part of this screening involves a thorough background check. Any prospective employee who has demonstrated a history of violent criminal behavior should not be hired.
Unfortunately, not all nursing homes conduct thorough background checks due to:
- Understaffing, necessitating the rapid hire of new employees
- Lack of funding and resources
- Negligence in complying with federally mandated regulations
Furthermore, it is possible for a prospective employee with abusive or violent tendencies to make it through the screening process if he or she does not have a prior history of such offenses.
If your loved one is raped by a staff member, both the nursing home and the staff member who committed the crime can be held accountable for the sexual assault.
Nursing Home Rape Committed by Residents
Not all instances of nursing home rape are committed by staff members. Often, nursing homes will take in mentally ill patients who may have violent tendencies. It is important for these nursing homes to adhere to the strictest safety standards to ensure the safety of other residents. These precautions should include isolating mentally ill and violent patients in their own area of the building so that they cannot prey on weaker, more defenseless residents.
If a violent or mentally ill resident is able to commit rape due to the negligent supervision of staff members, our Phoenix nursing home neglect attorneys can help you hold the nursing home accountable.
Experienced Nursing Home Abuse Representation
The Phoenix nursing home abuse lawyers at Cullan & Cullan can help you and your loved one hold the nursing home accountable in the event of a rape or other sexual assault. Over the years, our lawyers, who are also doctors, have helped many nursing home abuse victims receive the compensation they deserve, and we will provide you with compassionate representation in this highly sensitive matter.