This week I was privileged to join with 40 experts in the field of elder justice gathered in Washington, D.C. to put the finishing touches on a national road map to guide programs and services to address elder justice issues – preventing elder abuse, providing services for victims of elder abuse in all its forms, and building systems for prosecution of abuse, sexual assault and financial exploitation.  CSG was invited to the meeting to bring the perspective of state level policy makers to the...

Yesterday the Office of National Drug Control Policy urged that first responders be equipped with naloxone, a medication used to counteract opiate overdoses. Some states already have laws on the books to do just that.

In a CSG research brief...

Human trafficking, a form of modern-day slavery whereby children and adults are exploited through force or coercion for sex acts or manual labor, is purported to be a multi-billion-dollar worldwide industry and one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises. The U.S. Department of State estimates that there are approximately 40,000 men, women and children who become victims of human trafficking in the United States every year. States have taken action, setting up task forces to assess the extent of this insidious practice and experimenting with policies to encourage reporting, train law enforcement personnel and increase the criminal penalties for perpetrators. 

Stateline Midwest ~ April 2012

Iowa Rep. Lisa Heddens was recently working with a law firm specializing in elder law, and was shocked to hear the number of cases that involved the financial exploitation of senior citizens.

This Act establishes a process to enable crime victims or their advocates to recover property held by law enforcement agencies. 

This Act directs that certain criminal case restitution orders include restitution from the offender to the state Medical Assistance Program to pay expenses their victims charged to the program because of the offender’s crime against them. 

This Act defines a "cold case" as a homicide or a felony sexual offense that remains unsolved for one year or more after being reported to a law enforcement agency and one that has no viable and unexplored investigatory leads. The Act requires law enforcement agencies create registries of the names of cold case victims, their family members, and their legal representatives. It directs law enforcement agencies to notify such people when the agencies set up the registries.

A special court helps crime victims collect restitution. 

Suggested State Legislation: This Act allows victims of domestic violence or a representative to create a substitute address for them if there is a good reason to believe the victim’s safety is at risk. The address will remain confidential and guarded from databases to ensure further safety of victims. These addresses can be used by the victim when interacting with any public agency, like school districts or the motor vehicle department. This helps ensure that an abuser is unable to track a victim through these agencies.