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Shining a Light on Elder Abuse in June

Elder Abuse

It’s no secret that the population in the United States is getting older.  The Baby Boomer generation is enormous, and people who were born during this time frame are now reaching their golden years.  Given the millions of people in this age group, the need for elder care and other support services is only going to continue to intensify.  Sadly, all of this strain on the system and increased demand leads to serious problems.  That’s why we want to help bring attention to the fact that June is Elder and Dependent Abuse Awareness Month.  Elder abuse, like demand for elder services, is likely only going to get worse in the coming years.  Below is an overview of what Elder and Dependent Abuse Awareness Month is all about and some information regarding this terrible societal problem.

About Elder and Dependent Abuse Awareness Month

Elder and Dependent Abuse Awareness Month is being led by the California Association of Area Agencies on Aging, otherwise known as the C4A.  A link to the announcement of the awareness campaign this month can be found here.  C4A wants people to recognize some of the signs of possible elder abuse so that those who see these signs can take appropriate action.  Below you’ll find some statistics regarding elder abuse as well as some warning signs to watch for if someone you love is at this age.

Elder Abuse – Population and Statistics

The place to start when looking at this issue involves the growing population of older Americans.  According to the Department of Health and Human Services, in 1900 there were fewer than 5 million people in the United States were 65 years old or older, constituting approximately 2 percent of the population.  In 2020, nearly 60 million Americans will fall into this age group, which will be more than 15 percent of the population in the United States.  With that as a foundation, it’s clear to see how things can sometimes go very wrong and lead to elder abuse.

Unfortunately, elder abuse statistics are very difficult to formulate.  That’s because a large number of people who are abused in this manner never report these incidents for various reasons.  However, there are data available with regards to nursing home abuse, but once again these numbers do not represent the complete picture.  According to, the following statistics relate to nursing home abuse in the United States:

  • Between 1999 and 2001, nearly one-third of all American nursing homes were cited for violations of federal standards that could have led to harm or did lead to harm of residents.
  • Almost 10 percent of those cited nursing homes committed violations that led to risks of serious injuries or death, including some that did lead to serious injuries and death.
  • Nearly half of all nursing homes have at one time or another admitted to abusing or neglecting elderly residents.

These are astounding statistics, especially when one considers that, once again, many of these instances are never reported.

Elder Abuse Warning Signs

If one of your loved ones is older and is receiving care, you need to watch for some common warning signs of elder abuse.  A few examples of these warning signs include:

  • Withdrawal from conversations
  • Marked changes in personality
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Sudden financial difficulties
  • Emotional outbursts

While some of these signs may just be the result of aging or other circumstances, loved ones should not take anything for granted.  If you suspect that someone you love is being abused, contact the proper authorities immediately.  If you’re not sure whom to contact, get in touch with the elder abuse lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys as soon as possible.

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