and concerned citizens play a critical role in stopping elder
abuse and neglect. Learn more about the roles that members of
the following groups play and the resources available to them.
protective service workers are the "front line" workers
in elder abuse prevention. APS programs are designated as the
primary agencies in most states to receive and investigate reports.
in the field of aging are often the first to discover
abuse. For that reason, they provide a critical link between victims
and protective service. They can provide encouragement and support
to victims as they seek help and they can play an important role
in educating other professionals about the special needs of the
and medical professionals play a key role in the identification
and treatment of abuse. The trust and respect that patients often
have for their health care providers places these professionals
in a key position to help.
enforcement personnel ensure victims' safety and hold
perpetrators accountable for their actions.
provide insight into the etiology, incidence, and risk factors
associated with abuse - information that is critical in designing
effective interventions and services.
media plays a fundamental role in
educating the public and shaping its perceptions about abuse.
It can enlist the public's help in identifying abuse, educate
policy makers about the need for improved services and public
policy, direct victims to needed services, and warn abusers about
the consequences of their actions.
citizens can play a vital role in preventing abuse by
reporting cases, helping to raise awareness about the problem,
volunteering at agencies, and advocating for needed services and
Updated March 2003