By the time you read this blog post, another senior will have been a victim of Elder Abuse. Every 2 to 3 minutes another senior will have been abused, either, physically, sexually, emotionally, or psychologically, neglected, or scammed out of money that belongs to them.
In the next several Blog Posts we are going to be doing a five part series on Elder Abuse. What is it? What to look for, and how to spot it, the different types of abuse, and most importantly, what you can do about it.
Just to give you an idea how important this subject is, let’s look at one example to give you some food for thought.
One type of Elder Abuse is investment and financial scams that target the elderly, one of the most vulnerable and susceptible groups of people in our population.
Back in 2010, MetLife released a report estimating that $2.9 billion is lost by America’s elderly each year, based on published accounts of fraud, but most observers believed that figure was way too low. A new survey released in January 2015 might be closer to the mark: True Link Financial, a company which helps the elderly manage their money, estimates that seniors lose $36 billion every year, and roughly 1 in 3 older Americans have been scammed been in the past five years.
If these figures don’t make your blood boil then we question whether or not you are human. The cowardly hustlers who prey on the elderly do so because they know that the elderly will not usually report such abuses, either because they are ashamed, don’t know how to fight back, or because they do not see they are being taken advantage of. To target these people is nothing short of cowardice, and should be punished to the FULLEST extent of the law.
But sometimes the law sees this as a victimless crime; nothing can be farther from the truth. Too many times our justice system hands out too lenient of sentences such as probation, or time served as punishment for abusing the Elderly.
One reason is because of another shocking statistic, is that authorities believe that 90% of abusers are either family members, their Caregivers, or supposed “trusted Friends” of the abused.
This has to change.
Let’s take a better look at Elder Abuse.
Elder abuse refers to the intentional or willful neglectful acts by anyone, a scum bag contractor, a caregiver or other “trusted” individual that leads to, or may lead to, harm or scam for financial gain of a vulnerable elder.
It has been said that you can judge a society by the way it treats its elderly and its children.
How can we call ourselves a civilized society, if we let this happen to our elderly? It really makes you wonder just how anyone can do something so repulsive, and terrible as targeting the elderly.
It’s time to shed some more light on this subject.
According to the Administration on Aging (AoA)
What is Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse is any form of mistreatment that results in harm or loss to an older person.
Each year hundreds of thousands of older persons are abused, neglected, and exploited. Many victims are people who are older, frail, and vulnerable and cannot help themselves and depend on others to meet their most basic needs. Abusers of older adults are both women and men, and may be family members, friends, or “trusted others.”
In general, elder abuse is a term referring to any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult. Legislatures in all 50 states have passed some form of elder abuse prevention laws. Laws and definitions of terms vary considerably from one state to another.
In the next post we will concentrate on the Types of Elder Abuse