WATCH: Advocates look to help Alzheimer’s community by offering programs, push for stronger legislation

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TRI-CITIES (WJHL) — Work continues in Tennessee to help people affected by Alzheimer’s disease.

Just last week, advocates visited the capitol to voice the opinions about strengthening Tennessee’s “Silver Alert” law, while also raising awareness for care.

Tracey Kendell Wilson is the regional director of Alzheimer’s Tennessee and stopped by News Channel 11 on Sunday to talk about efforts underway in 2020 with Kelly Grosfield.

You can watch that video above.

According to a release from the organization, Senate Bill 2140 (Sponsored by Knoxville Senator Becky Duncan Massey) and the related House Bill 2630 by (Sponsored by Lewis Representative Rick Tillis) require the TBI to provide oversight and a statewide protocol to be implemented with local law enforcement agencies to help find missing citizens who have wandered due to dementia, physical impairment, or disability.

The agency says, “This will significantly strengthen the Silver Alert law by creating a uniform protocol across the state. With TBI providing education, implementation and tracking, Silver Alert will be more effective and potentially more capable of saving lives.  60% of people with Alzheimer’s disease will wander at some time during their illness. Alzheimer’s Tennessee advocates hope a strengthened Silver Alert system will help reunite those who wander with their families and prevent the tragedies that have become all too common.

Wilson added Alzheimer’s Tennessee is also offering a new program right here in the Tri-Cities, a “Memory Cafe.”

It’s a one-of-a-kind program for Northeast Tennessee and will serve people living in mild to moderate stage of the disease. Wilson says it is an opportunity for people to come together and talk about living with a diagnosis.

The Northeast Tennessee office is actually located in Johnson City. If you’d like to learn more about the cafe, call (423) 232-8993.

Alzheimer’s Tennessee is also preparing for the annual “Walk to Make Alzheimer’s a Memory” in the Tri-Cities.

This year’s event is set for May 2 at Memorial Park Community Center.

Registration is underway now. If you’d like participate, you can click this link for more details.

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