What is Elder Abuse?
Elder Abuse is:
- Pushing, hitting, punching.
- Shouting at, berating, intimidating, threatening to harm an older adult.
- Taking financial advantage of one who is lonely, vulnerable or has memory lapses.
- Taking money an older adult needs, “borrowing” money with no intention to pay it back, tricking someone to buy something he/she has no use for.
- Neglecting an older adult’s physical, medical and emotional needs.
- Allowing an older adult to neglect their personal needs.
What to Look for:
- Unexplained injuries, bruises, burns.
- Excessive fear, withdrawal, agitation.
- Sudden inability to pay bills, buy food or personal items.
- Changes in appetite; unusual weight gain or loss.
- Poor personal hygiene.
- Does not know personal finances.
- Unexplained changes in health.
DO's for families and friends:
- Respect and honor older adults.
- Report suspected abuse/mistreatment or self-neglect.
- Find sources of help and use them.
- Visit regularly; monitor the well-being of older adult neighbors.
- Keep track of medicines and doctors’ visits.
- Volunteer to help.
- Realize abuse can happen in your family or neighborhood.
- Speak up when something looks or sounds wrong.
DON’T's for older adults
- Don’t live with a person who has a background of violent behavior or alcohol or drug abuse.
- Don’t hesitate to tell others if you are abused, mistreated, neglected — your doctor, the clergy, a friend or family member.
- Don’t leave cash, personal information or
- valuables lying around.
- Don’t give friends or family money you need to live on.
- Don’t sign a document unless someone you trust reads it first.
- Don’t allow anyone to keep details of your finances or property from you.
- Elder Justice Advocate Program