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“Caregivers for Compromise” advocate for residents of long-term care facilities

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HOI --- The CDC released new guidelines for those who have gotten their COVID vaccine, but the rules don't apply to federally funded long-term care facilities.

Concerned family members are gathering at the Illinois state capitol Friday to make their voices heard.

"From March until early July, I didn't see my son at all," said Carrie Leljedal, who represents a group called Caregivers for Compromise. "I mean, unless there was a window between us. But I'm sorry - that is not a visit."

"The residents are still eating in their room alone," said Tammy Holden, another member of the group. "Activities are still few and far between, and it's just not a good way to spend your days."

Caregivers for Compromise is working to raise awareness of the effects of loneliness and isolation in long-term care facilities.

They want elected leaders to pass a bill to loosen restrictions.

"It will be an emergency essential caregivers act that would mandate that every resident in a facility would be allowed a few designated essential caregivers that could come in, regardless of whether there is another pandemic," Leljedal said.

Some privately funded facilities in Central Illinois are allowing visitors in private living areas and reopening lunchrooms - with positive results.

Leljedal says the group is hoping to see the same for their loved ones.

"If they totally look at the guidance, there is some room to work. It is not enough, but there is some," Leljedal said.

Caregivers for Compromise will gather at the Capitol with more than 500 signs to spread their message.

Harry Croton

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