6 Abuse-Prevention Projects Supported by ACL

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) functions largely on the motto that “the best way to intervene in the problem of elder abuse is to prevent it from happening.” In their mission to prevent elder abuse, they conduct a large amount of research, financially support studies and organizations, and provide a number of resources for elder Americans. As a government agency, the ACL uses tax dollars to advocate for elder Americans and, in particular, support these six key abuse-prevention projects.

Prevention of Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation

Established by the Association on Aging in 1987 as part of Section 721 of the Older Americans Act of 1965, the Prevention of Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation project is aimed at “strengthening elder justice strategic planning and direction for programs, activities, and research related to elder abuse awareness and prevention.” They do this at the federal and local level by training law enforcement, health care professionals, and others on the best way to recognize, respond to, and report elder abuse. Additionally, the Prevention of Elder Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation program takes part in outreach and education, advocacy campaigns, and elder abuse awareness and prevention efforts. 

National Center on Elder Abuse

Also a part of the Older American Act of 1965, the National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) was established as a resource center. Today, they provide “relevant information, materials, and support to enhance state and local efforts to prevent and address elder mistreatment.” Their efforts include spreading information and awareness to both the public and industry professionals, providing training opportunities, and assisting community-based organizations. In addition to their advocacy and research work, the NCEA also dedicates funds to preventing elder abuse in Indian Country, advises on policy, and assists on creating strategy for identifying and prosecuting scams aimed at the elderly.

Elder Abuse Prevention Intervention Demonstrations

This elder abuse prevention program is made up of five different awards that are issued as grants. These grants support specific research to discover and apply abuse intervention methods. Financial support for three-year projects is provided to grantees at the Alaska Division of Senior and Disabilities Services, New York State Office for the Aging, The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, University of Southern California, and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. These institutions partner with local Adult Protective Services, Departments of Aging, charitable foundations, hospitals, and multi-disciplinary teams to research, pilot, and implement abuse prevention strategies. 

Elder Justice Innovation Grants

The ACL-established Elder Justice Innovation Grants aim to “create credible benchmarks for adult maltreatment prevention, and for program development and evaluation.” Since 2016, this program has been making contributions to neglect, abuse, and maltreatment prevention and intervention. In 2022, ACL’s Elder Justice Innovation Grants went towards enhancing “Adult Protective Services approaches to cases involving opioids and substance use disorders” and improving “results for APS clients, and improv[ing] guardianship.”

Late Life Domestic Violence

Domestic violence occurs everywhere. Regardless of socioeconomic status, race, age, religion, sex, ethnicity, or sexual orientation, domestic abuse can occur. Defined as physical or sexual violence, stalking, or psychological aggression towards anyone with whom you have an intimate relationship, domestic violence can easily occur between elderly Americans and their spouses or their caregivers. Because caregivers are often family members, late life domestic violence is a bigger issue than most realize. The ACL Late Life Domestic Violence program is designed to bring awareness to this issue and offer resources for anyone in need of help. 

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day takes place on June 15 every year and was started by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization at the United Nations. This international day of awareness is a day to learn about every form of abuse, how it occurs, who is most likely to be a victim, and how to prevent abuse. Every year, campaign materials are dispersed and organizations like ACL take part in spreading the word and getting us one step closer to ending abuse.

If you or a loved one have been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, call Gharibian Law today for a free consultation and the best legal representation.