Elder abuse is getting some much needed attention following the Congressional hearings a few weeks ago. In fact, yesterday’s New York Times included an editorial titled “Broken Trust”, which examines the need for Congress to better protect the elderly in this country.
The article cites several unnamed reports which show an increase in the rate of elder abuse. The results echo those in the study we released last week – “The State of Adult and Elder Abuse in the United States”. This report showed an increase of 78 percent in the number of reported elder abuse cases in the past year and 92 percent of respondents also cited an increase in financial exploitation cases since the beginning of the economic downturn. According to 81 percent of respondents, this increase in demand for services without adequate funding is their biggest concern.
The New York Times cited a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report that found that in 25 of 39 states surveyed, financing for adult protective services had dropped in the last five years. According to this story, the report urged the department to create a resource center to collect and share abuse data among the states. The story also mentions a legislation that would create an office of elder justice to provide more support and oversight into this growing epidemic.
Read the complete NY Times story here.