‘It can happen to anybody’: Tempe community raises awareness on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

Author: Trisha Hendricks

TEMPE, Ariz. — The numbers are hard to hear. According to the National Council on Aging, one in every 10 Americans 60 years of age and older has experienced some form of abuse, ranging from physical to financial, with many cases going unreported.

On Saturday in Tempe, heartbreaking stories were shared, and powerful words were expressed at the second annual World Elder Abuse Awareness Day at the Friendship Village.

Victims and experts shared sobering stories and advice, so people can better protect themselves and their loved ones.

The discussion was centered around elder abuse and financial exploitation of Arizona seniors, a silent crime the National Council on Aging said impacts more than 5 million Americans every year.

It’s a heinous crime that robs people of their dignity, health, financial security, and in some cases, their lives, something Linda Arters said she’s all too familiar with.

“My mom was exploited, at that time by my family members, of over a million dollars that should have been used to get her in the proper care,” said Arters.

Elder abuse isn’t just physical, it can be emotional, psychological, neglect, sexual, isolation, undue influence, and financial exploitation. 

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