Senator Gary M. Farmer, Jr. (D-Fort Lauderdale) on Thursday issued the following statement regarding the heartless remarks recently made by Senator Dennis Baxley:
“Words cannot express how disappointed I am in my colleague’s rationalization of the events in the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills. To mitigate the impact of their deaths by suggesting their inevitability is simply wrong.
“We cannot condone death as a cost of doing business in the State of Florida. Our charge as a Legislative body is to do anything and everything we can to prevent tragedies like these from occurring or repeating themselves. Anything short of that is irresponsible and unacceptable.
“That is why I plan on introducing legislation that will go a long way toward preventing similar tragedies in the future. Ensuring access to life-saving temperatures, reviewing our oversight procedures and personnel, and providing accountability where there is none are just a few of the solutions that I will raise in this coming Session.
“I look forward to debating these issues when the time for a bill hearing comes. For now, it is my hope that Senator Baxley apologizes to the families and friends of the deceased, as well as the countless other nursing home and assisted living facility patients across our State. I ask Senator Baxley and my fellow Senators to join me in taking steps to ensure another tragedy like this never happens in the state of Florida. We owe them more than an abrupt dismissal. We owe them the dignity they were due.”