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Legislators present bill banning sex offenders from working in elder care facilities

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ALBANY, N.Y. - Two New York State Legislators are calling for the "Elder Care Facility Sex Offender Law" to prevent sex offenders from working in elder care facilities where seniors could be vulnerable to ex-felons.

New York State Assemblyman Jim Tedisco (R,C,I-Glenville) and New York State Senator Kathy Marchione (R,C-Halfmoon) said they are drafting new legislation to ensure senior care facilities perform sex offender registry checks for all employees to prevent registered sex offenders from working in the facilities.

This legislation comes after the arrest of Richard Ragone, a level 3 sex offender, accused of inappropriately touching a 91-year-old resident at the Loudonville Home for Adults. Ragone was a maintenance worker, who had been employed at the home since 2008.

The bill would close a current loophole in the law by ensuring that adult homes and assisted living residences conduct sex offender background checks on all their employees.

It was a loophole senator Kathy Marchione was surprised even existed. 

The current law states that criminal background checks must be done for people who work in nursing homes, but not for people who work in elder or assisted living facilities - and it completely omitted service workers.

Marchione, who's drafting this piece of legislation with Assemblyman Jim Tedisco, told NEWS10 their bill would require that all senior care facilities to run any potential employees name through the sex offender registry.

The legislators say there is no cost to run names of potential employees through New York's Sex Offender Registry.

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