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Aged Care Royal Commissioner announced as new patron for ALARM

The Honorable Tony Pagone QX, former Federal Court Judge and Chair Commissioner of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, has been appointed as a Patron of the community legal support organisation, Aged-care Legal Advocacy Reform Matter (ALARM).

Former Commissioner Chair for the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, Tony Pagone, is a new Patron of ALARM. [Source: Supplied]

ALARM is an organisation that addresses failures in aged care facilities identified by the Royal Commission by supporting residents of aged care, and their families and friends, through education to them and the broader community about their legal rights as well as providing access to expert lawyers.

As a Commissioner of the Aged Care Royal Commission, Mr Pagone has extensive knowledge and understanding of the current failures in the aged care system and was instrumental in handing a Final Report to the Federal Government.

Mr Pagone says, "I am grateful for the opportunity to act as patron to ALARM, an organisation addressing the inadequacies identified by the Royal Commission and contributing to the reform of the aged care sector by ensuring Australia’s most vulnerable people have access to legal support and services."

Chair of ALARM and retired Victorian Bar, Dr Bryan Keon-Cohen AM QC, says the organisation is excited to have Mr Pagone as a Patron.

"We are delighted to welcome Mr Pagone to ALARM. He will take on the important role of patron to a dedicated cohort of volunteer students, lawyers, law firms and academics working together through ALARM to eliminate the unacceptable levels of neglect, and improve accountability and governance in aged care," says Dr Keon-Cohen.

Elderly people who have suffered abuse - financially, emotionally or physically - in aged care facilities often require legal assistance, which ALARM is able to facilitate through its referral services.

"Residents of aged care facilities often feel vulnerable and need support to determine their legal rights. Many residents are unlikely or unable to complain about abusive practices due to a range of factors, including fear of retribution from their provider or diminished capacity," says Dr Keon-Cohen.

"The legal community has an important role to play in enforcing aged care residents’ legal rights in Australia. ALARM provides a critical role in seeking to ensure that Australia’s most vulnerable can access the legal support they need."

Dr Keon-Cohen wants the Federal Government to consult with ALARM and other advocacy groups to reform the Aged Care Act 1997 to make it consistent with the Royal Commission Final Report recommendations.

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