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Written by: Michael Bolton on Monday, October 4, 2010 Posted in:

Following news last week that Sturgis, Michigan is making fighting elder abuse a priority by training their police force to better protect the elderly from abuse, there’s news that a new group has formed in Southeast Missouri – the Mississippi/Scott County Against Elder Abuse Coalition – to combat elder abuse in their area.

According to a story in today’s Southeast Missourian newspaper, the Southeast Missouri not-for-profit has three years to train law enforcement officers, prosecutors, judges, government agencies, victims’ advocates, and others who come into contact with the elderly. The plan, says Martha Black, executive director of the Susanna Wesley Center, is to teach professionals in the two counties to identify and handle cases of elder abuse, ultimately coming up with a consistent, streamlined plan.

“What we’re really going to do is open up the avenues of communication and strengthen the response,” says Black. “The goal is to have a policy across two counties that all agencies agree to, so that if a police officer discovers a victim, for example, he knows who to call next so that elders don’t slip through the cracks.”

It may take a few more groups like this to make a trend, but the progress to end elderly abuse is moving in the right direction.  Read today’s story in the Southeast Missourian to learn more about the Mississippi/Scott County Against Elder Abuse Coalition.