After a Georgia Supreme Court decision that allowed nursing home residents to install hidden video cameras in their room to document abuse or neglect, legislators decided to take things a step further. The state House of Representatives recently passed a bill that would allow residents or their families to display a camera openly in the bedroom.
The idea behind the bill is that nursing home staff would think twice about abusing a resident or ignoring their needs if they knew they were being recorded every time they came into the resident’s room. But opponents say that the bill, while well-intentioned, could actually put vulnerable nursing home residents in greater danger of serious harm.
Who controls the ‘granny cams’?
Critics in the House said that the bill gives long-term care facilities too much control over streaming cameras. The bill would let facility management decide whether to allow a camera in a resident’s room — their private residence. And even when a nursing home would allow the camera to stay, the bill does not make it a serious crime for a staff member to tamper with a resident’s camera. A staff member who disabled, removed or turned off a resident’s camera would only face a fine.
The bill is currently before the state Senate.
What your family can do with footage of abuse
Many Atlanta-area families have found peace of mind knowing that if their loved one is the victim of abuse or neglect, a “granny cam” will capture the evidence. Once you have video identifying who is harming your parent or other relative, you and your loved one’s attorney could use it as leverage to obtain rightful compensation.