Elder Abuse: The Hidden Scourge
- New York 06/12/2014 by Linda Perry (WBAI)
Seniors gathered at City Hall this week to bring attention to elder abuse. They rally each year, but this year is different, according to Bobby Sackman, director of policy for the Council of Senior Centers and Services.
She says with the new mayor and new administration in New York City, there’s a chance for new money to help fight elder abuse.
“And not just fight for the measly $800,000 we had. We’re asking for $4 million more, that’s $4.8 million all together. That would build a robust system in communities across this city.”
Sackman says you can not deal with a sensitive hidden crisis of elder abuse unless you can drill down to the different languages, cultures and family structures.
Statistics are troublesome. One out of 24 cases of elder abuse gets reported. Sackman says 120,000 seniors suffer from some form of elder abuse that no one knows about.
"All seniors are vulnerable. This is a hidden scourge. It’s mostly their family members, their adult children, their grandchildren. That’s why you don’t hear about it. And we’re working with many groups and the NYPD and the City Council to get $4 million and address how we could better serve seniors who are elder abuse victims.“
While Sunday June 15th is Father’s Day, it’s also World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, mandated by the United Nations in 2006. Events are being held across the city, the nation and throughout the world.
Bobby Sackman, Director of Policy for the Council of Senior Centers and Services (center) holds City Council Proclamation announcing June 15th as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day in New York City.