New round of federal funding targets elder abuse

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The federal government will spend an additional $3.42 million to counter physical and fiscal crimes against the elderly, according to the Justice Department. The new awards will emphasize the use of new technology tools, closer interagency collaboration and enhanced legal services, among other approaches.

“Criminals who target and exploit our seniors are cowards, and their crimes are especially shameful because they prey upon the vulnerable,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said.

The funds will assist eight organizations:

  • Futures Without Violence — STAGES: Strategies and Training to Advance Greater Elder Safety; approximately $500,000 to educate teams of justice and community professionals in California about financial exploitation and elder abuse and create a shared, grassroots justice system-community vision for elder justice.
  • American Bar Association Fund for Justice — Enhancing and Evaluating Capacity of Elder Abuse Fatality Review Teams to Improve Victim Services; approximately $235,000 to build on the foundational Elder Abuse Fatality Review Teams model in the District of Columbia with the goal of enhancing and evaluating the capacity of these teams to improve the delivery of victim and ancillary services.
  • Northwestern University — Combating Elder Abuse and Financial Exploitation Through Technology/DASHBOARD; approximately $500,000 to develop an interoperable and integrated dashboard to share data, risk factors and resources for elder abuse victims.
  • Elder Law of Michigan Inc. — Innovation Framework for National Referral System Effective Referrals at the Community Level with Person-Enhanced Technology; approximately $500,000 to develop a framework for a national referral system based on a community-level referral model used in Michigan for victimized and vulnerable older adults, along with research and evaluation.
  • Lifespan of Greater Rochester Inc. — Elder Justice Advocates: Improving Outcomes for Elder Abuse Victims in New York State's Criminal Justice System; approximately $352,000 to recruit at least 50 elder justice advocates from victim advocates and victim assistance staff in district attorney offices, law enforcement units and domestic violence programs in at least 10 regions or counties across New York State.
  • Pro Bono Net, Inc. — Pro Bono Net's LawHelp Interactive/Risk Detector Elder Justice Initiative; approximately $496,000 to create online tools that enable innovative partnership and outreach models to comprehensively identify, respond to and remedy elder abuse and financial exploitation.
  • Utah Legal Services, Inc. — Innovative Remedies to Reduce Elder Abuse and Financial Exploitation; approximately $346,000 to educate the public on barriers to reporting by sharing victims' experiences and challenges in culturally appropriate video and podcast programs in Navajo, Spanish and English; develop and implement tailored legal intervention for high risk individuals; and develop a training protocol in order to improve referrals.
  • End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin — National Clearinghouse on Abuse in Later Life (NCALL)/ Lifting Up the Voices of Older Survivors Video Project; approximately $485,000 to create a collection of video clips of older survivors describing their experiences and insights regarding effective interventions, such as support groups and transitional housing.

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