Stop Mistreatment of the Elderly

nursing home

Target: Phil Gisi, Owner and CEO of Edgewood Vista Senior Living, Inc.

Goal: Urge nursing home owner to improve employee behavior regarding sexual assaults

In early 2013, a resident of Edgewood Vista nursing home in Hermantown, Minnesota was raped by a nursing assistant, and as recent court documents reveal, faced a series of humiliating experiences. Though her rapist was sentenced last month, disturbing allegations about Edgewood’s handling of the case have recently come to light. A day after the assault, the victim’s daughter reported the rape to police and the rapist confessed, but the victim was subjected to further mistreatment.

The victim was placed in a psychiatric ward at a nearby hospital for three days after having suffered this terrible ordeal, and was not given an examination until five days after the actual assault.  Allegedly, no one investigating the assault was told that the perpetrator had confessed, and the director of clinical services at Edgewood continued to blame the victim, calling her “a flirt”. Not only did an 89-year-old with dementia first suffer a traumatic assault; her credibility was questioned by those supposed to be taking care of her. It is extremely troubling that some of our most vulnerable members of society can be subjected to such horrible treatment, with little to no oversight.

Phil Gisi, the Owner and CEO of the group that manages Edgewood Vista, needs to address the blatant mishandling of this situation. Mistreatment of senior citizens in nursing homes is a terrible problem in the U.S., and those in charge need to take actions to address it. Tell Mr. Gisi that he needs to shoulder the responsibility for ensuring employees take the right steps when it comes to handling accusations of sexual assault.


Dear Mr. Gisi,

Recently at Edgewood Vista Facility in Hermantown, Minnesota, allegations have been made about the staff’s handling of a sexual assault. When one of the residents of the facility accused a nursing assistant of rape, instead of immediately examining her the staff sent her to a hospital where she was held in a psychiatric ward for three days. Allegedly during the time of investigation, even after the perpetrator had confessed, the director of clinical services at Edgewood questioned the victim’s credibility and called her “a flirt.”

As owner and CEO of Edgewood Vista Senior Living, Inc. you have a responsibility to ensure your employees are handling these types of situations in the most appropriate way possible. Senior citizens deserve to be treated with the utmost dignity and respect, just like any other person. I am writing to urge you to look further into the incident at the Edgewood Vista Facility in Hermantown, and ensure that in the future your employees take the right steps for handling a sexual assault with sensitivity and care.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Ulrich Joho via Flickr

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