Sen. Dodd: June is Elder Abuse Awareness Month
SACRAMENTO – Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, today acknowledged the month of June as Elder and Dependent Adult Abuse Awareness month in recognition of a serious and growing crisis in California.
“Understanding the pervasive nature of this problem as well as the warning signs are critical steps toward prevention,” Sen. Dodd said. “Because sadly, not a day goes by without reports of horrific cases of abuse or exploitation of the elderly or adults with disabilities.”
Last year, the Legislature passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 49, written by Sen. Dodd, which mirrors national and international recognition of the problem in June. It comes as the U.S. population continues to age with 10,000 people turning 65 every day. Each year, there are 6 million cases of elder abuse nationwide with 11 percent of all cases in California, according to the National Center on Elder Abuse. Another report from the National Council on Aging shows only 1 in 14 cases of elder abuse are ever reported to authorities.
Elderly and disabled adults face a constellation of abuse including physical, mental, financial, pharmaceutical or medical -- any one of which could restrict their ability to protect themselves, to report to authorities or to testify against perpetrators. The situation is worsened by the fact that one in eight people over 65 have Alzheimer’s disease, making them more vulnerable. One in two people with dementia experience some form of abuse. Abuse of developmentally disabled adults is also staggering.
“We cannot allow abuse against our most vulnerable people to go unnoticed,” Sen. Dodd said. “It is my hope that with greater recognition and awareness, we will end this shameful problem.”
Senator Bill Dodd represents California’s 3rd Senate District, which includes all or portions of Solano, Napa, Sonoma, Yolo, Sacramento, and Contra Costa counties. You can learn more about Senator Dodd at www.sen.ca.gov/dodd.