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Elder Justice Coalition - Sonoma County Human Services

A Coordinated Community Response to Elder and Depended Adult Abuse

About Us

The Sonoma County Elder Justice Coalition is a coordinated community response to elder abuse. We are united in our commitment as professionals and community members. Our purpose is to ensure that Sonoma County is a community where vulnerable adults can live free of abuse, neglect, and exploitation.

What is Elder Abuse?

Elder abuse is a serious problem. Each year, at least 10% of older Americans are victims to physical, psychological, or other forms of abuse or neglect. In reality, elder abuse is a larger issue than the numbers suggest. It is estimated that for each reported case of abuse, an additional twenty three go unreported (NY MetLife Prevalence Study). This large number of affected elders, combined with our knowledge that elders who experience abuse have a three hundred percent higher risk of death compared to those not abused, increases this issues seriousness and urgency.

This national issue is also a Sonoma County issue. In 2013, Sonoma County had more than 3400 reported cases of elder abuse. That is a 70% increase in reports in just 5 years.

Elder abuse is any form of mistreatment resulting in harm or loss (or potential harm or loss) to an older person, and includes physical, emotional and financial abuse, as well as neglect.

No one is immune, but everyone can help make a difference.

A Community Coalition to Respond to Elder Abuse in Sonoma County

In 2013, Adult Protective Services received more than 3,400 reports of suspected elder and dependent adult abuse in Sonoma County. This is a 110% increase in reports from 10 years ago.

In 2013, the Senior Advocacy Services Ombudsman responded to more than 900 reports of elder abuse and neglect in licensed care facilities in Sonoma County.

Who is at Risk?

Elder abuse affects seniors across all socioeconomic groups, cultures, and races. Women and older elders are more likely to be at risk. Elder abuse can occur at home, in nursing homes, or other institutions.