Media Campaign to Mark Elder Abuse Awareness Day
Last updated 5/9/2020 at 7:12pm
In recent years, local events have been held to mark World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, including an Elder Abuse Awareness Flag Ceremony featuring local officials and other community leaders, and a display of purple flags.
“Prior to the COVID-19 shutdown, the Tulare County District Attorney’s (TCDA) Office was planning on participating World Elder Abuse Awareness Day events that are hosted by Tulare County Adult Protective Services and the Public Guardian’s Office, which are usually held at Government Plaza,” said Nicole Burnham, TCDA victim advocate.
“We also traditionally host a booth at Senior Day in the Park where we can talk with seniors and caregivers and provide important resources,” she added.
A media campaign will replace the Government Plaza ceremony, at least until a decision is made about possibly rescheduling the event.
“Our office will be launching a bilingual multi-media campaign on social media, television, radio and bus ads to advocate for victims and encourage the public to report suspected abuse,” said Burnham.
“By setting aside time to focus explicitly on elder abuse, we send a message that this is a serious issue and we should never be tolerant of this crime,” explained Tulare County District Attorney Tim Ward.
“Last year, saw nearly 60 cases of abuse filed," he said. "So far in 2020, we have filed nearly 20 cases. Through education and community outreach, we want to prevent our seniors from becoming victims. That includes media campaigns in both English and Spanish, outreach events with caregivers, and community presentations with advocates specially trained in recognizing abuse.”
“If you suspect elder abuse, you can contact law enforcement or you are encouraged to call the County Adult Protective Services toll-free, 24-hour-a-day hotline at 1-877-657-3092 to report confidentially,” Burnham said.
“The National Center on Elder Abuse is a fantastic resource for victims and those looking for education on what this crime entails (www.ncea.acl.gov),” she added. “To schedule a presentation, call our victim services division at (559) 636-5471.
"However, due to the health precautions surrounding COVID-19, TCDA has postponed all community outreach events, as have other surrounding county agencies,” Burnham said.
The TCDA’s Office advises that in case of an emergency, to always call 911.