Nassau creating alert system for missing elderly

Assissted living facility. Assissted living facility. Photo Credit: MCT/David T. Foster III

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The Nassau County Legislature was expected to approve a bill Monday that would create a Silver Alert system for reporting elderly people who wander away, similar to an Amber Alert system in place for missing children.

"I expect it will pass, and I think it is a great thing for the county," the sponsor, Legis. Wayne Wink Jr. (D-Roslyn) said in an interview Friday. Suffolk County already has a similar system.

The bill would require that the Nassau County police establish a registry where families could put the names of adults with Alzheimer's or dementia, and police would send out immediate alerts to the media and other police departments if they were reported missing.

Wink said he was moved to act after one of his constituents, 80-year-old Hal Doliner of Port Washington, who was suffering from Alzheimer's, took the keys to his wife's car last year and drove away. Doliner died later in a car crash in the Village of Sands Point.

The full legislature was scheduled to begin this week's agenda at 10 a.m., but it will first convene at 9 a.m. to consider a bill requiring the posting of calorie information by restaurants. The public hearing on the bill on July 7th was put in recess because the meeting was running late into the night.

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