Definitions–Abuse, neglect, and exploitation of vulnerable adults

October 30, 2020 9:13 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

As used in this chapter:
(1) “Bodily injury” means physical pain, illness, or any impairment of physical condition.

(2) “Caregiver” means:

(A) a person, agency, facility, or other organization with responsibility for providing subsistence, health, or other care to a vulnerable adult, who has assumed the responsibility voluntarily, by contract, or by an order of the court; or

(B) a person providing care, including health care, custodial care, personal care, mental health services, rehabilitative services, or any other kind of care that is required because of another’s age or disability.

(3) “Lewd and lascivious conduct” means any lewd or lascivious act upon or with the body, or any part or member thereof, of a vulnerable adult, with the intent of arousing, appealing to, or gratifying the lust, passions, or sexual desires of the person or the vulnerable adult.

(4) “Neglect” means intentional or reckless failure or omission by a caregiver to:

(A)(i) provide care or arrange for goods, services, or living conditions necessary to maintain the health or safety of a vulnerable adult, including, but not limited to, food, clothing, medicine, shelter, supervision, and medical services, unless the caregiver is acting pursuant to the wishes of the vulnerable adult or his or her representative, or an advanced directive as defined in 18 V.S.A. chapter 111; or

(ii) make a reasonable effort, in accordance with the authority granted the caregiver, to protect a vulnerable adult from abuse, neglect, or exploitation by others.

(B) Neglect may be repeated conduct or a single incident that has resulted in or could be expected to result in physical or psychological harm, as a result of subdivisions (A)(i) or (ii) of this subdivision (4).

(5) “Serious bodily injury” shall have the same meaning as in subdivision 1021(2) of this title.

(6) “Sexual act” means conduct between persons consisting of contact between the penis and the vulva, the penis and the anus, the mouth and the penis, the mouth and the vulva, or any intrusion, however slight, by any part of a person’s body or any object into the genital or anal opening of another.

(7) “Sexual activity” means a sexual act, other than appropriate health care or personal hygiene, or lewd and lascivious conduct.

(8) “Vulnerable adult” means any person 18 years of age or older who:

(A) is a resident of a facility required to be licensed under 33 V.S.A. chapter 71;

(B) is a resident of a psychiatric hospital or a psychiatric unit of a hospital;

(C) has been receiving personal care and services from an agency certified by the Vermont Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living or from a person or organization that offers, provides, or arranges for personal care; or

(D) regardless of residence or whether any type of service is received, is impaired due to brain damage, infirmities of aging, or a physical, mental, or developmental disability that results in some impairment of the individual’s ability to:

(i) provide for his or her own care without assistance, including the provision of food, shelter, clothing, health care, supervision, or management of finances; or

(ii) protect himself or herself from abuse, neglect, or exploitation. (Added 2005, No. 79, § 2; amended 2005, No. 192 (Adj. Sess.), § 7, eff. May 26, 2006.)

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