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Poloncarz proposes nursing home protections

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A local law to better protect seniors in nursing homes is being proposed by Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz.

He says the death of 82-year-old Ruth Murray, who was fatally beaten in August by another resident at Emerald South Nursing Home in Buffalo, shows why lawmakers need to act.  

"No one should see their parent look like what Mrs. Murray looked like after the attack. More importantly, no one should be attacked, nevertheless murdered, in a nursing home," Poloncarz said. "No family should ever be deceived by a nursing home about a loved one's condition."

Poloncarz says under "Ruthie's Law" injuries suffered by nursing home residents would have to be reported to family members within one hour. The Commissioner of Senior Services would also be notified. 

State Assemblyman Sean Ryan is also pushing to increase fines for nursing home offenses from $10,000 to $50,000.