For Immediate Release, January 23, 2020
Contact: Teresa Kay-Aba Kennedy, elderdignity(at)hotmail.com, 212-901-6913
ELDER DIGNITY RELEASES TRIO OF VIDEOS INCLUDING “SILENT TORTURE” MAKING LINK BETWEEN HUMAN TRAFFICKING AND GUARDIANSHIP
Calls for Governor DeSantis to release Dr. Lillie Sykes White from forced isolation in Florida for National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month
NEW YORK, NY – On the heels of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and Peace Week, and in conjunction with National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, Elder Dignity has released three advocacy videos to combat the rising crime of forced isolation of seniors for money, highlight the equity court crisis and help free 91-year-old Dr. Lillie Sykes White from a fraudulent guardianship in Florida. She has been entrapped in an involuntary guardianship for eight years and in forced isolation for 1261 days, almost four years. All of the videos are produced by Teresa Kay-Aba Kennedy--a former MTV Networks Vice President, Dr. White’s niece and the Founder of Elder Dignity.
1) SILENT TORTURE: TRAFFICKING THROUGH GUARDIANSHIP (39:35) reveals how guardianship has become a new form of human trafficking. The video includes the top elder justice advocates in the country such as Terri and Rick Black, Founders of the Center for Estate Administration Reform (CEAR); Dr. Sam Sugar, Founder of Americans Against Abusive Probate Guardianship (AAAPG); Philip C. Marshall, Founder of Beyond Brooke; Thomas Wright, Producer of Edith + Eddie; Dr. Zena Crenshaw-Logal, Founder of National Judicial Conduct & Disability Law Project; among others. It also includes families of victims in Florida, Nevada, California, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey and Virginia, showing the similar pattern and practice that happens across the country. The call to action at the end is asking the public to sign a petition requesting that Governor Ron DeSantis free Dr. White. The governor has the responsibility to enforce state laws including Chapter 825: Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation of Elderly Persons and Disabled Adults. The video also makes a direct appeal to President Trump and the 2020 candidates to address the overall issue. Video can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/SAr2IkwhwUs
2) LET AMERICA BE AMERICA AGAIN (10:21) is an Arts for Justice performance piece of the 1935 Langston Hughes poem and features three generations of the Sykes-Kennedy family: Janie Sykes-Kennedy, Teresa Kay-Aba Kennedy, Sheila Kennedy Bryant, James Scott Kennedy, Jr., and Daniel Marsh Kennedy. Since Ms. Sykes-Kennedy was close friends with poet Langston Hughes, she provides thoughts on him and the piece as well. Video can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/zKCb7j4dsh4
3) WHAT IF MADEA WAS ABDUCTED? (17:54) is a direct appeal to actor, producer and social activist Tyler Perry and fans of his character Madea. It calls for a creative approach to advocacy using the character of Madea to speak out against the separation and isolation of seniors and dependent adults for money. It also includes actual video of Dr. White herself speaking out about the injustice. Video can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/h82Xpp8LU0k
The equity court crisis has spurred a human rights crisis in America. In the equity courts, there is no jury. The judge is all powerful. The attorneys can lie without risk of reprimand. There are no rules of evidence and no due process. It is ripe for exploitation and has become open season on families. Dr. Sugar calls it “the perfect crime” and has written a book on the subject. With an estimated $273 billion under guardianship and 10,000 Baby Boomers reaching retirement age every day, there is a lot of money at stake and a “new mafia” has formed to control the till.
“Estate trafficking through power of attorney, trust, guardianship and probate fraud has become entitlement by the legal community nationwide. All they need is a complicit judge,” said Rick Black.
Dr. White’s fraudulent guardianship is considered one of the most egregious in the country. There was no legitimate reason for her abduction in 2016 and no reason for her continued isolation from the family she is requesting. It is all simply to facilitate constructive fraud and Florida leadership to-date has turned a blind eye.
“This morning, I called the Volusia County sheriff’s office for a wellbeing check and Officer Cousins said that Aunt Lillie was ‘alert, awake and healthy’ so if anything happens to her as we step up the advocacy, it will be murder,” said Teresa Kay-Aba Kennedy. “Enough is enough. It’s time to bring Aunt Lillie home. I’m hoping our efforts can spark national dialogue and greater reform at the federal level,” she added.