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ACR-98 Elder and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Awareness Month.(2017-2018)

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Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 98

Relative to Elder and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Awareness Month.

[ Filed with Secretary of State  July 21, 2017. ]


ACR 98, Kalra. Elder and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Awareness Month.
This measure would proclaim and acknowledge the month of June 2017 as Elder and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Awareness Month.
Fiscal Committee: NO  

WHEREAS, Elder and vulnerable adult abuse is a serious crisis in California; and
WHEREAS, Cases of abuse or exploitation of elder or vulnerable adults are reported with concerning frequency; and
WHEREAS, Throughout the United States, 10,000 people a day are turning 65 years of age; and
WHEREAS, One in 10 Americans 60 years of age and older experience abuse each year; and
WHEREAS, One in every eight individuals over 65 years of age is living with Alzheimer’s disease and nearly one in two people with dementia experiences some form of abuse by others; and
WHEREAS, Elder and vulnerable adults may be affected by a constellation of physical, mental, pharmaceutical, or medical influences, any one of which could render them unable to protect themselves or self-advocate, to report to authorities when abuse occurs, or to testify against perpetrators; and
WHEREAS, A 2009 National Institute of Justice study found that 11 percent of elders reported experiencing at least one form of mistreatment, including emotional, physical, sexual, or neglect, in the past year; and
WHEREAS, Elder and vulnerable adult abuse may be physical, emotional, sexual, or fiduciary and consists of conduct that makes the elderly vulnerable and recognizes no boundaries of economic, educational, or social status, gender, race, culture, religion, or geographic location; and
WHEREAS, Indicators that abuse may be occurring include bruises or pressure marks, unexplained withdrawal from normal activities, a change in alertness, unusual depression, sudden changes in financial situations, strained or tense relationships, or frequent arguments; and
WHEREAS, Being trained to recognize these signs is the first step toward the prevention of elder and vulnerable adult abuse; and
WHEREAS, Elder abuse results in utilization of the public safety net; and
WHEREAS, Elder and dependent adult victims have a mortality rate three times that of the general public and are 300 percent more likely to die a premature death; and
WHEREAS, Current estimates suggest that as few as one in 14 cases of elder and vulnerable adult abuse is reported, including fewer than one in 25 incidents of financial abuse, because the victims are ashamed, hopeless, intimidated, or afraid of the perpetrator; and
WHEREAS, To date, the State of California does not collect or maintain comprehensive data on abuse cases, reports, or investigations, thus inhibiting the government’s capacity to be informed, make informed decisions about the strategic use of existing resources, improve the existing reporting system, enhance protections, and provide partners the tools necessary to secure justice; and
WHEREAS, Elders and vulnerable adults have the right to live safely in the least restrictive environment, whether in their homes or health care facilities, and to enjoy an optimum quality of life while being protected from injustice; and
WHEREAS, Private citizens and public agencies must work to combat crime and violence against elders and vulnerable adults; and
WHEREAS, Due to the prevalence of elder abuse, June 15 is recognized internationally as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, first established in 2006, to raise awareness of elder and vulnerable adult abuse and to promote better understanding of the cultural, social, economic, and demographic issues behind the growing incidence of elder and vulnerable adult abuse around the globe; and
WHEREAS, All Californians are strongly encouraged to report suspected abuse of an elder or vulnerable adult by calling their local adult protective services agency, Long-Term Care Ombudsman, law enforcement, or emergency services agencies; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature proclaims and acknowledges the month of June 2017 as Elder and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Awareness Month; and be it further
Resolved, That California’s recognition of elder and vulnerable adult abuse in June is consistent with the World Elder Abuse Awareness Day of June 15; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.