§ 42-66-1. Declaration of purpose.
The legislature finds and declares:
(1) That the state has an obligation to provide for the health, safety and welfare of its elderly citizens;
(2) That to develop and implement innovative programs to insure the dignity and independence of our elderly citizens is essential to insure and protect their rights;
(3) That upgrading and maintenance of services and programs pertaining to our elderly citizens deserves priority consideration as a means of preventing ineffective responses to their health, safety and welfare needs;
(4) That the establishment of a department of state government to provide for the health, safety, and welfare of elderly citizens is the most effective way to insure that they are better prepared and equipped to lead productive and meaningful lives; and
(5) The abuse of elderly persons is a social and moral problem in our state and nationally and the state has a responsibility to provide protection to vulnerable elderly persons who are abused and/or neglected. The legislature recognizes that reports of elder abuse have grown significantly and are reaching alarming proportions and that there is an immediate need to clarify and strengthen the state's role and responsibilities in the prevention and alleviation of elder abuse.
(P.L. 1977, ch. 235, § 2; P.L. 1992, ch. 406, § 1.)