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Sun Gazette: Whipple, Hope Honored by Senior-Advocacy Group Print

BY Scott McCaffrey, Staff Writer

Created:  Thursday, May 19, 2010  7:53AM


State Sen. Mary Margaret Whipple (D-31st) and Del. Patrick Hope (D-47th) have received the 2011 Elder Rights Award from the Virginia Elder Rights Coalition.

They were honored for sponsoring legislation in this year’s General Assembly session aimed at strengthening the rights of nursing-home residents.

One of the bills would provide information to family members of nursing-home residents about family councils. It was passed by the legislature and signed by Gov. McDonnell in March. The second piece of legislation resulted in a meeting convened by the Office of Licensure and Certification on issues related to investigation of complaints.

“Both Del. Hope and Sen. Whipple were perfect patrons because they cared about the issue and they were articulate advocates for the bills,” said Kathy Pryor, chairman of the Virginia Elder Rights Coalition. She said Whipple and Hope are “the epitome of a legislator who is in the business for all the right reasons - because they want to make Virginia a better place for all its inhabitants.”

The annual awards are presented in the name of Erica Wood, an Arlington resident and longtime advocate for seniors.

“To receive an award named after my dear friend, Erica Wood, who has devoted her entire life to ensuring the protection and safety of older adults across the commonwealth, makes this honor even more special,” Hope said.