Chicago…State Representative Brad Stephens (R-Chicago), a member of the Illinois House Veterans’ Affairs Committee, released the following statement after participating in the hearing looking into the Covid-19 outbreak at the LaSalle Veterans Home:
“During the hearing, we learned that several safety protocols and CDC recommendations were not followed, and the Covid-19 outbreak at the LaSalle Veterans Home could have been prevented. There were issues with staff not being equipped with the right PPE as well as the home using non-CDC recommended hand sanitizer. It was deeply concerning how asymptomatic workers who tested positive were encouraged to continue working their shift after they learned of their positive test result.
“The testimony from the Department of Veterans Affairs has brought up many more questions than it answered. I am committed to working with both my Republican and Democrat colleagues and the administration to determine the cause of this outbreak and find solutions.
“My heart goes out to the nearly three dozen families that lost their loved one due to this preventable outbreak. At this moment, we don’t need finger-pointing. We need answers. The committee should hold those at fault in the Department accountable, but more importantly, should ensure no other home has an outbreak and that our veterans are safe.”