In the United States, an estimated 5 million older adults are abused, neglected, or exploited each year. Victims of elder abuse and exploitation are robbed of their homes, life savings, their dignity, their independence, and sometimes even their lives.
After more than a year of distance to safeguard our seniors, we come together on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, June 15, 2021, to "recommit ourselves to protecting every senior’s right to live their golden years with dignity and respect."
Visit the University of Southern California’s Center on Elder Mistreatment for tools and tips about raising awareness of elder abuse. This year's theme is "Building Strong Supports for Elders," and there are ample Tools and Tips to help raise awareness, such as outreach and social media guides, sample letters to the editor, downloadable fliers, and more.
OVC is working tirelessly to ensure that older victims of abuse and financial exploitation are connected with trauma-informed services and helpful resources that protect the safety and confidentiality of victims.
Often, financial fraud and other scams go unreported because victims are scared, embarrassed, or unsure of who to contact. The National Elder Fraud Hotline (1–833–FRAUD–11), managed by OVC, has experienced case managers standing by to provide victims of financial fraud aged 60 or older with personalized support by assessing their needs and identifying relevant next steps. You may incorporate digital artwork into your elder abuse awareness efforts to help raise awareness about this cause.
Through the Crime Victims Fund—financed by fines and penalties paid by convicted federal offenders, not from tax dollars—OVC is supporting—
- increased legal services for older victims of crime across the country, particularly in rural areas;
- enhanced multidisciplinary teams to better identify and respond to cases of elder abuse and financial exploitation;
- training, resources, and tools for state and local law enforcement partners to expand their capacity to effectively prevent and combat elder abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation;
- state and local elder abuse programs;
- evidence-based mental health interventions for older victims, who screen positive for depression, and telehealth services; and
- the development of critical resources that help stakeholders identify, reach, and better serve older victims of crime.
OVC also offers publications, resources, and training and technical assistance, available on OVC’s Elder Fraud and Abuse website. Access OVC’s list of events for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day events around the country of interest to those serving, supporting, and working with victims in their community.