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The Braley Brief: Sticking up for our Seniors

May 30, 2014
Bruce Braley - U.S. Representative (IA-01) , Traer Star-Clipper

Iowa has a larger proportion of seniors than nearly any other state in the nation-and for generations they've been improving our state in ways big and small. Unfortunately, our seniors-citizens that have worked hard in our fields and factories, started businesses, and been the lynchpin of our families, are being targeted by scam-artists, many of them operating outside the United States.

Last month I met with seniors all across Iowa on a tour to speak about senior fraud prevention. The Iowans I met shared their pictures of growing up and stories of raising families in Iowa and I was touched by their candor. We spoke about the wide-range of issues important to Iowa seniors-including fraud and how seniors can protect themselves against it.

Recently, pathetic con-artists have increasingly turned to scams that specifically target Iowa's seniors over the phone and internet, and to help protect Iowa seniors against this type of fraud, I've supported multiple pieces of legislation to crack down on these types of predatory scams.

One of those, the Anti-Spoofing Act, protects unsuspecting seniors from fraudulent practices that abuse technology to target unsuspecting seniors, and the Protecting Seniors from Health Care Fraud Act of 2013 would create a list of the top 10 most prevalent health care fraud schemes targeted at seniors with recommendations on what can be done to stop them. The top 10 list would be updated and mailed quarterly to seniors, keeping them up to date on which scams are most prevalent.

It's important to me that seniors are informed of the types of scams that fraudsters are attempting and that those perpetrators are punished for abusing technology to prey on unsuspecting seniors. I'm working hard to ensure those two objectives are passed into law.

In addition to working on legislation, my district offices are here to help. I would encourage any Iowa senior or loved one who believes they have been the victim or target of a scam to contact my office or the office of the Iowa Attorney General so that these cases can be properly and thoroughly investigated.

Iowa's seniors are a critically important part of Iowa communities and our state's economy. Protecting the generations of Iowans that have worked hard and made Iowa the great state it is remains one of my top priorities.

Whether it's con-artists trying to scam our seniors, or politicians trying to privatize their social security and transform Medicare, our I plan to stand up for Iowa's seniors just like they have stood up for us.



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