Elder Abuse Awareness Day: A commitment to protecting our seniors.

June 15 marks an important day on our calendar – Elder Abuse Awareness Day. It is a day for communities worldwide to unite in bringing attention to the challenges and difficulties faced by elders and our collective responsibility to protect and support them.

Financial abuse of seniors is a particularly concerning aspect of elder abuse, involving the unauthorized or improper use of an older person’s funds, property, or resources.

Here’s what you can do to help protect the seniors in your life:

  • Stay informed: Be aware of the common signs of financial exploitation, such as sudden changes in accounts, estate planning documents, or unexplained withdrawals or spending.
  • Communicate: Maintain open lines of communication with elderly family members about their financial matters.
  • Report suspicions: If you suspect that an elderly person is being financially exploited, it’s crucial to report it. You can contact local adult protective services, law enforcement, and financial institutions where they hold accounts.
  • Talk about money: Talk to your aging parents about money and creating a financial plan to manage their affairs.

Here’s how seniors can protect themselves:

  • Stay connected: Keep in touch with loved ones and remain active in your community to reduce isolation and vulnerability.
  • Regularly review your finances: If you have questions, seek assistance from a trusted family member, a financial advisor, or an attorney.
  • Know your rights: Learn about your rights and the resources available to you. This includes understanding how to use legal tools like powers of attorney and wills.
  • Add a trusted contact: Designate a trusted contact to provide another layer of protection to help keep your accounts safe.
  • Seek professional advice: Consult with professionals when making significant decisions, especially those involving legal, financial, or health matters.
  • Protect your personal information: Don’t give out your Social Security, credit card, or bank account numbers over phone or email.

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