Saturday, January 19, 2008

Assembly Members in Rochester Told More Needs to be Done About Elder Abuse

Justina Wang Staff writer Rochester Democrat

(January 18, 2008) — Advocates for and family members of seniors who have faced abuse told state Assembly members at a hearing today that more needs to be done about the problem.

During hours of testimony at City Hall, the advocates and experts told stories of sons and church members stealing tens and hundreds of thousands of dollars from elderly men, women arriving in hospital emergency rooms afraid of their family members and caretakers blatantly neglecting those under their watch.

Only about one in four cases of elder abuse are reported, and only 5 percent of victims report the wrongdoings themselves, said Art Mason, director of Lifespan’s elder abuse prevention program. Because often times the abuser is a family member, “there’s so much shame, there’s so much embarrassment...that they’re very reluctant to report,” he said. While the problem is growing, advocates who spoke Friday argued that too few resources are available to educate and help abused seniors.

No comments: