From Harford County government:
On June 15, 2011 older adults in Maryland and those who care about them will participate in a national and worldwide day highlighting the too often ignored issue of elder abuse. The theme for this year’s World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is “My World. Your World. Our World – Free of Elder Abuse.”
This day is a public “call to action” with special events held in various parts of the state. Those concerned about neglect and abuse will be wearing purple to show their concern that abuse be reported, addressed and prevented.
In the United States, there are over one million reports of elderly and vulnerable adult abuse which is only the tip of the iceberg with only one in fourteen cases reported. Too often, seniors are abused, neglected and exploited by the people they trust the most. Abuse takes many forms, some involving intimidation or threats against the elderly, some involving neglect, and other involving financial trickery. The most common types of abuse are physical, emotional, sexual, or neglect by abandonment.
The State of Maryland, through its various state agencies addressed over 8000 reports of abuse, neglect, and exploitation last year. Elder abuse can occur anywhere – in the home, in nursing homes, or other institutions. It affects seniors across all socio-economic groups, cultures, and races.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2008 American Community Survey, nearly 40,000 people, or about 17% of the population, in Harford County are age 60 and over.
In Harford County, those who suspect abuse of elders who live in the community should call Adult Protective Services at 410-836-4717.
Concerns about those living in nursing homes and assisted living facilities can be reported to the Long Term Care Ombudsman at 410-638-3025. The Ombudsman is an advocate for those who live in long term care facilities, promoting resident rights and quality care.