June 01, 2018
Here's a situation where awareness could help you
(or your parents) now
I'm talking about elder abuse. And if you think you're too young to be affected by it, think again. It affects you just like any kind of abuse that's inflicted upon any member of your family or circle of friends.
I know this is heavy for a Friday email blast, but please continue reading. This is about creating awareness so we could all fight the good fight. That's something we should all feel good about! So, give me a minute and you'll be armed with the resources you need to protect both yourself and your loved ones.
The statistics are heartbreaking:
1. 1 in 10 Americans aged 60+ have experienced some form of elder abuse.
2. The abusers are gender neutral.
3. 60% of the abusers are adult family members.
It's a 2018 regulatory and examination priority of FINRA, the regulatory body that oversees the securities industry. From FINRA's website:
FINRA's action comes at a time when each day for the next 12 years, an average of 10,000 Americans will turn 65. Con artists tend to target older people, in part, because they are more likely to have built up nest eggs, according to the FBI. And, the U.S. Department of Justice estimates that $3 billion is stolen or defrauded from millions of elderly Americans every year.
Financial advisors now receive training to learn the signs to watch out for. Compliance teams are using technology to uncover signs of it.
But as the U.S. population ages, cognitive disease is on the rise. Add money to the mix and the incidents of elder abuse are expected to continue to skyrocket.
Ultimately, it's up to all of us to be aware of this so we may recognize and confront it if we see it. Fortunately, the NIH has a site dedicated to this subject; the signs to look out for, the phone numbers to call, and the various types of elder abuse that exist.
There are many types of abuse:
The signs of abuse:
- Physical abuse happens when someone causes bodily harm by hitting, pushing, or slapping.
- Emotional abuse, sometimes called psychological abuse, can include a caregiver saying hurtful words, yelling, threatening, or repeatedly ignoring the older person. Keeping that person from seeing close friends and relatives is another form of emotional abuse.
- Neglect occurs when the caregiver does not try to respond to the older person's needs.
- Abandonment is leaving a senior alone without planning for his or her care.
- Sexual abuse involves a caregiver forcing an older adult to watch or be part of sexual acts.
Has trouble sleeping
- Seems depressed or confused
- Loses weight for no reason
- Displays signs of trauma, like rocking back and forth
- Acts agitated or violent
- Becomes withdrawn
- Stops taking part in activities he or she enjoys
- Has unexplained bruises, burns, or scars
- Looks messy, with unwashed hair or dirty clothes
- Develops bed sores or other preventable conditions
For More Information About Elder Abuse and Where to Get Help
U.S. Department of Justice
National Domestic Violence Hotline
1-800-799-7233 (toll-free, 24/7)
Elder abuse can affect us all. I know if we band together and arm ourselves with these resources, we could help protect our seniors.
Thank you for taking the time to read this!
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Mitchell O. Goldberg, AAMS, President | Investment Professional
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