Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel

Eight defendants have been charged since the Michigan Elder Abuse Task Force was established in March by the state Attorney General Dana Nessel and state Supreme Court Justices Richard Bernstein and Megan Cavanagh, Nessel said Thursday.

The latest to be charged is Elizabeth Haines, 62, who faces one misdemeanor count of assault and battery. Haines, a former aide at Samaritas Senior Living in Saginaw, MI, in April 2018, “allegedly grabbed an elderly, wheelchair-bound resident in a forceful and aggressive manner and pinned the resident’s arms to her wheelchair while ignoring the resident’s requests to stop,” bruising the resident’s arms, attorney general said.

“Most vulnerable residents are completely dependent on their caregivers for a myriad of essential daily tasks, and when those caregivers become abusers, my office will step in and hold them accountable,” Nessel said in a statement.

The task force includes 80 representatives from more than 50 organizations from around the state. Members are working to increase awareness, discussion and solutions to help eliminate elder abuse, the attorney general said.

Among the participating organizations are senior living and care provider EMH Senior Solutions; the Health Care Association of Michigan, the state affiliate of the American Health Care Association; LeadingAge Michigan; the Michigan Assisted Living Association, the state partner of Argentum; and the Michigan Center for Assisted Living, the state affiliate of the National Center for Assisted Living.