I was not very old when my grandmother ended up in a retirement home. She was ill and we knew she didn't have long to live.
I really loved my grandma - I used to call her in the early morning when neither my mother or father had awakened.
She always answered, she said she was not sleeping. But years later, I realized that most of the time, I was actually waking her.
We should never stop appreciating our elderly family members. That's why this next story is so important, despite being rather painful to read.
Something that was very clear when my grandma moved into the retirement home was that she didn't like to get help with things she could previously do herself. She was embarrassed that she could not manage on her own. Wearing diapers was probably the most difficult aspect of her condition.
We have previously reported on abuses of the elderly, but this is probably the worst I have seen.
Camille thought he'd found a great accommodation for his mother Helen who suffered from Alzheimer's. The home was described as loving and caring.
After a while Camille began to smell a rat - something felt wrong. Then, one day he discovered his mother Helen with a black eye. He'd had enough. He installed a hidden camera.
Camille soon discovered the unthinkable. Despite putting up a camera, he continued to hope and feel it was unlikely that anything wrong was taking place.
But after watching the recordings, he discovered that not just one, but several of the home's staff were abusive toward his mother.
In the video below we see among other things how one staff member blows his nose in Helen's bed sheets. We also see two employees heavily making out in her room while Helen looks clearly uncomfortable.
Several other residents of the home go into Helen's room and take her things without anyone from the staff stopping them. Worst of all is when Helen gets a washcloth full of feces propped up in her face.
I have no words and can only imagine that this is the case for more of the residents of this home.
When Camille reveals the films to the home director Alan Cavell, he acknowledges that they failed. He promises to greatly exceed the procedures and security at the home in order to ensure that kind of behavior never be repeated again.
All the misbehaving staff have been fired, even after one of them was reinstated when Camille decided that he no longer wanted his mother there. The manager was fired following the incident.
No member of the staff however was prosecuted to the disappointment of Camille.
Helen, who died in September 2016 was the wonderful mother of seven children. She was a nurse during World War II before she had to flee the Nazis and emigrated to Canada. Thanks to her vigilant son Helen had a dignified end.
Here you can see a video of mismanagement. Viewer discretion is advised.
Repeatedly reading about gross mismanagement and abuse in nursing homes makes my blood boil.
I don't know how I would have reacted if the abused elderly person would have been someone in my own family. It is important that we help each other share this story so that more people will pay attention to this kind of incident. No one should have to experience anything like it- it is completely unacceptable!