By: Victoria Seaman/ Victoria’s Corner
I was proud to sponsor legislation when I was in the legislature that brought stiffer penalties to those abusing seniors through our guardianship system. Together with others, we made meaningful improvements to the guardianship laws that made it significantly more difficult to take advantage of seniors.
I was pleased to see Attorney General Adam Laxalt leverage these reforms into an indictment against April Parks, who stands accused of more than 200 counts felony charges; including theft, racketeering, exploitation of seniors and perjury. Together with other law enforcement officers, Laxalt led the way to ensure that Parks would be tried for the allegations made by the victims and their families.
These reforms were critical. Guardians have virtual absolute control over much of the lives of those in their care. We had to ensure that Nevada did not become a hot bed for exploitation.
While the tale of guardianship in Nevada started off poorly, the ending appears to be sunnier. In addition to the indictment, it is a victory for the American form of government in Nevada. This package of reforms (every one of them) started because every day Nevadans decided to contact their legislators, like me, and share their stories.
Our part time, citizen legislators listened to their concerns and responded by introducing new measures into our statutes. There was broad agreement within our community that the concerns shared by those every day folks needed to be addressed - and it was.
I want to encourage you to do the same. Get involved. Contact your state legislator if there is a problem you think needs fixed. This case proves that your voice can make a difference.