Bennett: ‘State government must do better’ to protect vets’ health

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Bennett: ‘State government must do better’ to protect vets’ health (Springfield, IL) – Veteran state Rep. Tom Bennett (R-Pontiac) says the COVID-19 outbreak at the LaSalle Veterans’ Home that left 36 individuals dead and more than 200 sick seems all too common.

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“It comes on the heels of the outbreak of Legionnaire’s disease at the Quincy Veterans Home a few years ago,” Bennett said in a recent update he gave from the Illinois State Capitol that was posted to YouTube. “The Inspector General found personnel at the home made a series of mistakes including poor preparation, poor communication and training in addition to failing to utilize proper procedures once the outbreak was discovered.”

Soon after Linda Chapa LaVia resigned as director of the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs, a report slammed her handling of the crisis, including the assertion she “abdicated” her responsibilities to an individual who had no medical background, and who issued rules that contradicted health guidelines while allowing the veterans’ homes in Illinois to manage themselves.

Bennett said the House has now approved a resolution calling for a full investigation by the auditor general.

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“State government must do better when it comes to protecting the health of veterans that reside in these facilities,” he added.

Terry Prince, a Navy veteran, was appointed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker on April 1 to serve as acting director of Veterans Affairs.

Bennett: ‘State government must do better’ to protect vets’ health

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