Connecticut Attorney General's Office

Press Release

Attorney General Calls For Criminal Background Checks On Home Health Care Aides

January 21, 2009

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal today announced a legislative proposal to require that home health agencies conduct criminal background checks on their aides.

The proposal would also prohibit such agencies from hiring anyone convicted of a felony within the past 10 years.

The proposal covers any licensed home health care agencies, homemaker companion service agencies and homemaker-home health aide agencies, and would require criminal background checks on home health and homemaker-health aides that they employ or contract with to perform services.

"Home health and homemaker aides are entrusted with profound responsibilities -- and should be held to powerful standards," Blumenthal said. "A criminal background check for home health aides is not only reasonable, but common sense.

"Home health aides are responsible for some of our most vulnerable citizens -- mothers, fathers, children and other loved ones who may be unable to care for themselves. This proposal seeks to protect citizens from unscrupulous or uncaring aides who may exploit or endanger defenseless clients, as we have seen in many cases in Connecticut and across the country."

In addition to background checks, Blumenthal's proposal would compel agencies to require that their employees sign a form questioning whether they have ever been convicted of a crime involving violence or dishonesty in a state or federal court in any state; or was subject to any decision imposing disciplinary action by a licensing agency in any state.

Any employee who makes a false written statement will be guilty of a class A misdemeanor.