Elder Abuse Prevention

Elder abuse prevention refers to any knowing, intentional or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or any serious risk of harm to a vulnerable adult, much akin to bullying.

“To those seniors, and especially elderly veterans like myself, I want to tell you this: You are not alone, and you having nothing to be ashamed of. If elder abuse happened to me, it can happen to anyone. I want you to know that you deserve better”.

Mickey Rooney

Hundreds of thousands of the elderly are both abused and neglected. The victims are usually older people, often frail who cannot help themselves. They depend on others to meet their most basic needs.

Abusers are both women and men, and may be family members and friends.

elder abuse prevention

There are elder abuse prevention laws in all 50 states. The laws and definitions of the terms vary considerably from one state to another.

There are different types of abuse.

  • Physical Abuse – inflicting physical pain or injury on a senior, Examples are, slapping bruising or restraining by physical or chemical means.
  • Sexual Abuse – non-consensual sexual contact of any kind.
  • Neglect – the failure by those responsible to provide food, shelter, health care, or protection for a vulnerable elder.
  • Exploitation – the illegal taking, misuse, or concealment of funds, property or assets of a senior for someone else’s benefits.
  • Emotional Abuse – Inflicting mental pain, anguish and distress on an elder person, through verbal or nonverbal acts, such as humiliating, intimidating or threatening behavior.
  • Abandonment – desertion of an elder by anyone who has assumed the responsibility for care and custody of that person.
  • Self-Neglect – it is the failure of a person to perform essential, self- care tasks and that failure threatens their health and safety.

Learn more about Elder Abuse Prevention

Warning Signs of Abuse

Bruises, pressure marks, broken bones, abrasions, and burns could be signs of physical abuse.

Unexplained withdrawal from normal activities and unusual depression

Check Resources on Elder Abuse Prevention