Friday, March 7, 2008

For Many, The Golden Years Aren't So Golden

Elder abuse is widespread, yet few resources are directed toward combatting it. One Senate committee, for example, found that less than 2 percent of federal money targeted for abuse prevention is spent to help elders.

But the Baby Boom generation, now heading into its senior years, is focusing attention on the issue, as Jennifer Fernandez's story in the News & Record on Sunday pointed out.

That story also showed that the problem isn't just substandard care in nursing homes. It's also financial abuse. Studies show that the elderly are the ones most often falling victim to these scams. Aware that many older people have substantial savings, and aware that aging may have left the elderly isolated or diminished their faculties, scammers see them as prime targets.

Clearly, the nation must target the abuse and exploitation of elders or else the elderly will keep getting targeted. The elderly must not be preyed upon by anyone — from family members to Internet scammers.

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