By Aaron Morris
June 15th is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, and COVID 19 has only increased our need for thoughtful and diligent work.
Elder abuse includes far more than physical harm, and during the growing isolation of the last year, rates of fraud, neglect, and financial exploitation increased. The National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) is working harder than ever to protect our seniors, and their efforts are gaining momentum.
While abuse rates may have increased, the underlying realities and the NCEA’s work to prevent and address these are not new. For almost 30 years the NCEA has fostered relationships among multiple public and private agencies like the Social Security Administration (SSA) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) as well as industry leaders and trade organizations working with senior clientele.
These partnerships have also spun off other inter-agency collaborations. The CFPB and FDIC have worked together to make available free, educational materials to help financial professionals and family members avoid, recognize, and report various forms of elder abuse. Anyone interested can download materials from the FDIC Website or CFPB’s Resource Center.
The NCEA also works to directly shape policy informed by research. However, addressing elder abuse takes more than just reporting and legislation, and the best prevention is a social, rather than individual, effort. The greatest risk factors are related to isolation, and so many are looking for programs that build relationships. One law enforcement initiative is working to Connect Communities & Neighbors.
Our team at Northwest Reverse Mortgage recognizes that our senior clients are invaluable community members, but they are also often uniquely vulnerable. That’s why we are committed to protecting and educating the people we serve and their families. We are glad for the many professionals and agencies who share these priorities.
If you suspect you or a loved one have been the target of elder fraud, you can call the National Elder Fraud Hotline for help: (833) FRAUD-11 (833-372-8311).
Contact Loan Officer Aaron Morris here: https://www.nwreverse.com/Aaron-Morris