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question everything Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-17-05 11:17 PM
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Elder abuse flourishes (in CA) in silence
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The Daily Breeze

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Elder abuse flourishes in silence

The problem is growing in California because it is largely unrecognized and unreported.
By Paul Seave

Elder abuse is an ugly crime. Its victims are left to suffer in silence and loneliness, often at the hands of the very people charged with their care. And, more often than not, crimes against elders go unreported.

We know that cases of elder and dependent-adult abuse are increasing every year. Nearly a quarter-million seniors and dependent adults are victimized annually, and recent estimates say one of every 20 elders is a victim of physical abuse, financial abuse, psychological abuse or neglect.

And still this crime goes largely unrecognized and unreported.

The California Attorney General's Office is in the final stages of a three-year statewide public awareness campaign designed to educate the public about the prevalence and seriousness of this problem. This campaign, called "Face It. It's a Crime," has collaborated with local agencies, law enforcement groups and community-based organizations to educate individuals on how to recognize and how to report elder and dependent-adult abuse.

To make it easier to report suspected abuse, the Attorney General's Office established a statewide toll-free hotline for the reporting of abuse. To date, more than 8,000 calls have been received, and local adult protective service agencies report a substantial increase in local calls since the beginning of the campaign.


The toll-free hotline to report suspected cases of elder or dependent adult abuse is 888-436-3600. Please, use it.

Paul Seave is a special assistant to California's attorney general.

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