Sen. Dale Zorn comments on joint committee hearing on the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans

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Sen. Dale Zorn

Sen. Dale Zorn

LANSING, Mich. — Following the first joint committee hearing on the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans, Sen. Dale Zorn, R-Ida, issued the following statement:

“First off, I want to thank the auditor general’s office for their report on the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans. They play an important and often overlooked role in Lansing and the residents of the state are better off because of their work.

“I can’t say the same for the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.

“I was sickened to read the report of violations in nine areas, from inadequate monitoring of prescriptions to ignoring complaints. Money was mismanaged. Staff ignored written policy and failed to fully investigate allegations of abuse and neglect.

“But the most disturbing finding — Number Four — was the direct care of the residents. In a home for veterans, who cared so much that they sacrificed to protect us and thought they were coming home to a state that cared, the fact that the department failed to fix one of the most basic functions of the home reported in the previous audit in April of 2013 is unacceptable.

“The state has failed. This department failed. The contractor failed. I cannot express enough my loss of trust with J2S Group Healthforce, and if their claim that they are fulfilling their contract is true, whoever wrote the contract should be fired.

“Without delay, it is imperative for us to solve this travesty and develop and implement an aggressive strategy that will provide superior care and a high quality of life for our veterans and their families.”