It’s every family’s worst nightmare: an ailing elderly member is moved to a nursing home for 24-hour care. The scenario in and of itself is an emotional one, but imagine if you started noticing signs of abuse on your loved one? For one Michigan family this became a terrifying reality—and one that has grabbed the attention of the entire country.
When Dearborn resident, Salim Younes checked his 89-year-old father, Hussein Younes, into the Autumnwood of Livonia nursing home, he had high hopes that his father would receive excellent care. Unfortunately, the elder Younes was subjected to unimaginable cruelty in a place that should have been providing him comfort.
Salim got his first indication that something was awry when he started noticing cuts and bruises on his father. When he brought up the issue to the staff, they blamed the lesions on the 11 falls that Hussein had suffered during a 5-month period.
It was a particularly tough situation for the son because his father was no longer able to communicate through speech, so he trusted Autumnwood’s claims until Salim noticed that his father was beginning to lose weight.
That’s when the son took the matter into his own hands and placed a hidden camera disguised as an alarm clock by his father’s bedside. What he would later discover in the recordings would shock everyone.
Just two days into Salim’s video investigation, he gathered a whopping 119 examples of neglectful behavior, including pushing, hitting, and verbal abuse. The lawsuit, which was filed months after Hussein was taken out of the facility, also alleges that the patient was denied water and a call button.
All of this is appalling, but what makes it worse is the fact that the abusive behavior on the part of Autumnwood’s caretakers seems to have been racially motivated. The family’s attorney, Jonathan Marko, told the media that there are several instances in the 48-hour video clip that point to discrimination.
“One woman praised Donald Trump…and his efforts to deport Arab Americans, referring to how they were ‘taking over Dearborn’ as she abused Mr. Younes,” Marko stated.
Indeed, the video plainly shows multiple accounts of racist rhetoric being hurled at the 89-year-old from the nurses who should have been caring for him.
When Salim finally had proof of his father’s abuse, he immediately withdrew him from the facility and filed a lawsuit. Autumnwood of Livonia has stayed fairly quiet about the incident but has confirmed that the caretakers featured in the video have been fired.
We know, it certainly is a lot to take in, but it’s a story that, we think, needs to be told. Watch the video below to see a small excerpt of what Hussein Younes endured at the hands of abusive nursing home staff. Hopefully, this family gets the justice they deserve when they have their day in court!
We’d love for you to share your thoughts on this upsetting story. Were you surprised by the clip? Do you think the abuse was racially motivated? What do you think should happen to the nursing home?