SENATE UNANIMOUSLY APPROVES BLUMENTHAL, COLLINS BIPARTISAN RESOLUTION RECOGNIZING WORLD ELDER ABUSE AWARENESS DAY
Estimates identify more than two million elders– one in every ten adults over 60 – annually are the victims of abuse, neglect, or exploitation
Financial abuse results in seniors’ loss of $2.6 billion each year
(Washington, DC) – Last night, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved a bipartisan resolution by U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine.), Member and Chair of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, respectively, recognizing June 15, 2015 as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. The resolution calls attention to the problem of elder abuse around the nation, and honors all those that fight for justice for victims.
“The abuse of our nation’s elders – an unacceptable, unconscionable problem – is too often overlooked and underreported,” said Blumenthal. “This measure will increase awareness and recognize those that are working every day to help our nation’s elders against these reprehensible crimes. Our elders have worked hard, accumulated savings, counted on security and are depending on us, trusting us, for their safety. The number in this age group will only grow within the next years and I thank my colleagues from both sides of the aisle for their unanimous support, as well as the President for proclaiming June 15 as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.”
“As Chairman of the Senate Aging Committee, our efforts have brought to light many situations in which seniors have been defrauded out of their hard-earned savings and even suffered physical harm,” said Senator Collins. “Unfortunately, however, many of cases of elder abuse in the United States and around the world are never reported or discovered because the victim is too ashamed to report the abuse, particularly when it involves a family member. As a consequence, the true impact and incidence of this kind of abuse is still largely unknown. To remedy this problem and to raise awareness, organizations around the world and in my home state of Maine have taken action and continue to work tirelessly to raise awareness of elder abuse and to protect the rights of aging adults.”
U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) are co-sponsors of the resolution.
Nationwide, it’s estimated that more than two million – one in every ten adults over 60 – are the victims of abuse, neglect, or exploitation each year; the vast majority of these cases go unidentified or unreported. Financial abuse alone results in seniors’ loss of $2.6 billion each year. This resolution recognizes survivors of elder abuse, and commends those who dedicate themselves to the prevention, response, and prosecution of abuse and exploitation of seniors.
The resolution recognizes that public awareness has the potential to increase the identification and reporting of elder abuse by the public, professionals, and victims, and can act as a catalyst to promote issue-based education and long-term prevention;
In addition to designating June 15, 2015 as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the resolution:
- Recognizes judges, lawyers, adult protective services professionals, law enforcement officers, long term care ombudsmen, social workers, health care providers, professional guardians, advocates for victims, and other professionals and agencies for their efforts to advance awareness of elder abuse; and
- Encourages members of the public and professionals who work with older adults to act as catalysts to promote awareness and long-term prevention of elder abuse by reaching out to local adult protective services agencies, long-term care ombudsman programs, and the National Center on Elder Abuse, and by learning to recognize, detect, report, and respond to elder abuse.
You can view, download, and print a pdf of the resolution here.