Warning Signs

You can help protect the safety and well-being of our community’s older citizens by looking out for these and other signs - and reporting suspected cases:
  • Bruises, black eyes, welts, lacerations, rope marks, fractures
  • Untreated injuries in various stages of healing
  • An elder’s report of being hit, slapped, kicked, raped or mistreated
  • An elder’s sudden change in behavior, including being emotionally upset, agitated or extremely withdrawn
  • A caregiver’s refusal to allow visitors to see an elder alone
  • Torn, stained or bloody underclothing
  • Dehydration, malnutrition, untreated bed sores or poor hygiene
  • Hazardous or unsafe living conditions (for example, improper wiring, no heat, no running water, extreme clutter, hoarding, trash, animals, etc.)
  • Bills unpaid despite adequate resources
  • Improper or inadequate clothing, lack of necessary medical aides, such as eyeglasses, hearing aides, dentures, walker, wheelchair, etc.
  • The desertion of an elder at a public location such as a mall, senior citizen center, etc.
Exploitation of Resources
Also be aware of signs of exploitation of an older person’s resources:
  • Sudden changes in bank account practices, including unexplained withdrawals of large amounts by a person accompanying an elder
  • Abrupt changes in a will or other legal or financial documents
  • Unexplained disappearance of funds or other valuable resources or possessions
  • Discovery of an elder person’s signature being forged for financial purposes or for the transfer of titles, etc.
  • Unexplained sudden transfers of assets to a family member or someone outside the family