Reports of elder abuse on the rise in El Paso County

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Thursday was World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, which promotes protection of our older generations.

“It can happen every day, it can happen next door, it can happen to a friend or a neighbor,” said Kristina Iodice, spokeswoman for the El Paso County Department of Human Services.

According to Iodice, reports of elder abuse are on the rise in El Paso County. She said more people are aware of the crime and are reporting it more often.

“It’s not so much that elder and adult abuse happens more often here, it’s just people are more aware and care about the vulnerable population here,” said Iodice.

According to DHS, in 2016 alone, there were more than 4,000 reports of elder abuse. They said while some are due to self-neglect, it’s always important to report what you see. They said the majority of cases involve financial abuse.

In cases of elder abuse, a big warning sign is changes in habits or behaviors.

“All the sudden they’re not doing what they normally do, now some of those things can be because of the aging process, but others can be indicative of a problem,” said Iodice.

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