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World Elder Abuse Awareness Day: Advancing Equity

June 15, 2022 • By and

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Last Updated: June 15, 2022

Man helping father use computerWorld Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) serves as a reminder about the factors surrounding abuse and neglect of older persons. The pandemic highlighted the disproportionate impact of tragedy on underserved communities, including seniors, who faced high rates of elder abuse, fraud, and nursing homes deaths.


One recent report from the Federal Bureau of Investigation noted that elder fraud has grown. Older adults in the United States reported $1 billion in losses in 2020. This includes victims of COVID-related scams.

Reporting can be difficult, with many seniors unsure of the process or too embarrassed to report. Understaffed Adult Protective Services offices can also cause lengthy processing times and underreporting. Older adults are less likely to report fraud – especially money lost. Older adults in the U.S. are likely to lose nearly 25 times more to scammers, with an estimated $113.7 billion a year!


To prevent and respond to elder abuse, we need a better understanding of who could be victims. Thanks to the Elder Justice Act of 2020, we have a national reporting system for elder abuse – the National Adult Maltreatment Reporting System (NAMRS).

There is evidence that definitions of abuse vary between cultural communities. Learning how diverse communities define abuse is essential to develop culturally competent interventions. We can address the lack of trust within communities of color with more cultural representation in law enforcement, social service organizations, and health care systems. The Elder Justice Coalition works hard to reach communities of color and underserved populations with our initiatives and involve them in our advocacy work.

Social Security is a key member of the Elder Justice Coordinating Council. They are committed to offering training to staff members to recognize elder abuse and financial exploitation. They’re doing great work to protect beneficiaries from Social Security and government imposter scams.

On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, let’s remember that elder abuse doesn’t discriminate. It victimizes across all social, racial, ethnic, and gender domains. We must commit to helping victims and preventing further victimization – especially of those who have been underserved. Please share this important resource with your family and friends—and post it on social media.

Our posting of this blog does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation of any non-Social Security organization, author, or webpages.

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  1. Joel M.

    What’s the point? No matter what, men will be men. A dress is in order! Abuse is a kind of abuse. A hundred years from now. On the occasion of Father’s Day in 2022, I shall think redactle about my father. And don’t forget to tell him how much I adore him!

  2. Glen M.

    I was living in 55 plus mobile park San Jacinto California. The management advised me of bigger unit for sale after getting me to purchase the mobile home telling me it’s clear to own spent every last dime I had. I loved the new home in less then a month of living in the unit sold my home was paid up on all rents and deposits and the management had me vacated off the old owners eviction. He tell me because I lied to him I had no time no place to go out out on the streets could not even go back into my home and get anything the management tells me that I have 2 weeks to sale my investment my home with no real reason I always paid rent on time never caused problems I am 55 years old with chronic heart issues. I found out after the fact that this management has priors of doing these things with other poor elders with no rear family I even talked to a few of them one man wants to pursue a case he is 70 and they cut his electric 3 months prior to kicking him out and lean sale his home. With no reason. He was paid up on his unit. I need to find justice these people can not keep doing this to people I am still with no place to live found out manager took out water meter eltric and gas I still paid up till the end of month on my new purchase and they changed locks I can not even go into my home. I. Am so upset and I don’t know how to get justice I want to return to my home but these people are going to do to me what they been doing for years to people who trust them kick out of home most cases with no reason other then personal gain leans there home saying abandoned and sealing from 8k to 25k and telling people the only got few hundred they need to louse there things and really need to be locked up and never let back into position to destroy anyone’s life like they just did mine I AM BEGGING FOR JUSTICE the management is now running threw park telling people I was evicted and I lie about everything when asked about what is being slandered on my name he asked him to tell me one lie he had no answer but I told him he is just trying to cover up what he did to me because people who know me know I am a good passive man who only wanted bigger place I need help

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Glen. We are sorry to hear about your situation. You may be eligible to receive social services from the state in which you live. These services include free meals, housekeeping help, transportation, or help with other problems. To get information about services in your area and find out if you qualify, you will need to contact your state or local social services or welfare office. We hope this helps.



  3. Rebekah R.

    It may seem like great news that seniors are getting the biggest benefits increase in more than four decades. But the reality is that it’s not a good thing for seniors or for anyone else.

    See, the COLA is calculated each year based on the consumer price index, which shows how prices have increased from year to year. In other words, it’s based on inflation, so a big raise means the costs of goods and services have gone up dramatically. So while retirees will get more money on paper, they won’t enjoy any more buying power with their bigger checks. In fact, their money isn’t likely to go as far for two key reasons.

    The first big issue is that Social Security raises have not accurately kept pace with the actual increase in spending older Americans have experienced over time due to the way the COLA formula is structured. The shortfall is substantial, with the Senior Citizens League estimating that benefits have lost 40% of their buying power since 2000.

    The second issue is that most older Americans rely both on Social Security and savings to help them make ends meet. And inflation hits savers hard, as the buying power of seniors’ invested funds will also decline when prices go up. Since seniors typically need to be invested conservatively to avoid undue risk of loss, their returns may not be high enough to avoid losing substantial ground when inflation is surging so much.

    The Social Security Administration hasn’t yet announced the benefits increase for 2023 and since it’s based on data from the third quarter of the year (July to September) things could still change. But all evidence suggests inflation will be a persistent problem in the months to come, so retirees should start preparing now for rising prices over time that their bigger Social Security check may not cover.

    The $18,984 Social Security bonus most retirees completely overlook

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    • Rhonda F.


  4. Rachael P.

    Who needs it! Men will be men no matter what. Put a dress on. Abuse is abuse. At fifty or seventy. I will remember my father 2022 Father’s Day. And tell him I love him no matter what!

  5. Mary G.

    Where I used to work we had a saying “It was easier for someone to steal from an elderly person than to rob a 7-11”. It was a no brainer for the thieves. Sad that some people think this is acceptable.

  6. Debby

    Elder abuse is being done to my mom by who son who is the power of attorney. I want to know how laws can be changed to stop elder abuse by power of attorneies, adult protective services, care facilities, ombudsman etc. I live in the state of wisconsin and I have contacted my senator and other government officials about this. Something needs to be done to stop this. This is my mom and what is happening to her is killing her and no one wants to help. My mom needs help and resources to to file against allthe people who refuse to help her fight the abuse. I hope to hear from you and Something can be done soon.

    • Judy

      You Know Debbie No Justice Today.
      The Bloody Attorney Gets Them Out And The Judges Slap Their Wrist!!! That Why Everyone is going Thru a Lot Of Pain Had 2 Identity Thief By A Criminal VNA. Its Under The Feds. I Wants Justices!!!

  7. Debby


    What do you do when the power of attorney of a person is abusing an elder and no one wants to help. Adult protective services won’t help, legal action won’t help, ombudsman won’t help, the care facility turns there back to elder abuse by the power of attorney. I live in the state of Wisconsin and you can’t get anyone to help. They all the big and nothing happens. What I can I do and how can I protect my mom from more elder abuse?

  8. Debra

    I have a brother in a state run assisted living facility. He gets estimated 50 dollars a month of the money he gets for disability which is not much . $1100 , the place is called St. Gayle’s Manor . You would think this will be an elaborate facility but no it isn’t. It’s dirty, unkempt and poor furnishings and it’s sad be cause this is supposedly what our government provides for these seniors. This is abuse as far as I am concerned because these people are in need and get scraps . There should be more investigations and accountability for these facilities that should be taking pride in caring for these seniors . I actually mailed quite a lengthy letter to our President Trump in 2020 with my concerns for our seniors and the lack of support and care they should be getting. I agree there is abuse among our seniors and especially in some of these state facilities. Not to take away other abuse but this is a big one and something needs to be done to address these living conditions. Illegals are treated better than our American Seniors. My brother needed a phone and had to wait because everyone who crossed our border got phones and of course they were short supply and my brother had to wait. I don’t know what it’s going to take to get the attention of our current government to ensure these facilities are top grade. Sad!!

    • Frances R.

      So sorry. , I feel lucky l moved back to England ,and live in a Independent living in Stratford on Avon our flats are 750 sq feet with large balconies ,this is loacal council and government funded. At 1,000 a month but can get rents paid by benefits ,we do not ass husband has military pensions so pay our own rent. It is so new and lots to do l feel for you and l am blessed we are so free to come and go or have social health packages when needed save going into nursing homes . We have our pets also with us .hope someone helps this abuse living to stop ,

  9. Andrew (.

    That’s a very insightful article. Thank you Bob.

  10. John L.

    If you folks were interested in Equity, then everyone at Social Security would make the same wages. Equity of outcome regardless of how hard you work. You only want that for us not yourselves.

    • Bill g.

      What in the world are you talking about. Can you read? If so try reading the blog again and make comments that pertain to the article.

    • Barbara T.

      I filed a complaint of fraud abuse and gross misconduct against employees of SSA I am an elderly dying person. I provided a timeline of what has happened with the OIG. What was done was absolutely nothing. Currently I lost my Medicare due to the inactions of SSA…However with the lost of my medical, which the amount always was and is being taken out of my benefits nothing has changed. Being on oxygen due to negligence on legoland construction site I am suffocating to death I also have a long history of strokes. I had another TIA last night and still experiencing numbness on my entire right side I cannot go to the hospital I have no medical 16 months and still no action taken . Missing redetermination file false fraudulent overpayment created by the very person to whom was to enter it into the system. I was aware on July 24,2020 that my disability benefits would continue however, since the SSA agent was retiring he named the person who was to enter this file his name was written on the file. So what has the OIG done with my complaint NOTHING ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!!!!! In closing, I purposely withheld 1 document dated July 8 2020 not only does this prove the knowledge and involvement of the very same person to whom his successor relied on to enter the redetermination file.

      • Beth M.

        Barbara – I’m very sad to read about your situation. There are people (non-profits) and attorney’s who specialize in assisting seniors with Medicare/SSA benefits. You should google to find them. They do exist. Lawyers are expensive, but free or a small donation, you can get help.

        I hear your frustration, but NEVER give up! I found Medicare representatives (federal employees, not Advantage brokers) very helpful and knowledgeable. You have to wait on speaker phone for a long time, but they fixed my problems a few times related to my husband very quickly.

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