Ernst: I’ve called on the administration to crack down on scammers, and I’m glad DOJ is taking action to protect Iowa’s seniors

The Iowa senator has made cracking down on scammers and protecting Iowa’s seniors during the COVID-19 pandemic a top priority.

RED OAK, Iowa—U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) is applauding the Trump Administration for heeding her calls to crackdown on scammers targeting Iowa’s seniors. The Department of Justice (DOJ) has now issued guidance for seniors on detecting and reporting COVID-19 related scams, as well as resources for law enforcement to investigate scammers.

For a one-pager on the information from the DOJ’s Elder Justice Initiative, click HERE.

“In this time of crisis, when Iowans are pulling together to help one another, it is utterly appalling and disgusting to see scammers going after our seniors. I’ve called on the administration to crack down on these criminals, and I’m glad the DOJ is taking action to protect our seniors—by both ensuring folks have information available to them and our law enforcement have the tools to hold these scammers accountable. We must continue looking out for our fellow Iowans, especially our seniors and those who may be most at-risk, as we combat COVID-19,” said Senator Ernst.

Last month, after hearing about a scam targeting Iowa seniors in the Fort Madison region, Ernst called on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to put additional measures in place to educate seniors and provide consumers with information about how to seek recourse if they are targeted.

Senator Ernst has been fighting for Iowa’s seniors throughout this COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier this week, Ernst held another telephone town hall with Iowa’s elderly population and provided information and resources for seniors to utilize and to protect against scammers and fraud amid the pandemic. Ernst also pushed the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to waive a tax filing requirement for seniors and others who normally do not file taxes in order for them to receive their direct cash assistance.

She also helped secure a number of important relief measures for seniors in the three bipartisan packages Congress passed and that are now law, including:

  • Broadly expanded Medicare’s telehealth services, so seniors can access more care and health services from home.
  • Included free diagnostic COVID-19 testing and free coverage of a future COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Provided additional funding for Aging and Disability Services Programs, which supports senior nutrition, home-delivered meals, community-based services, and family caregivers.
  • Required Medicare Part D plans to provide up to a 90-day supply of prescription medication if a senior requests this during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last week, Ernst penned a column about her efforts to secure relief for and ensure the care and safety of Iowa’s seniors. Read her column HERE.

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