New Kansas council to help with elder abuse issues will have first meeting next month

A new council aimed at strengthening statewide efforts to prevent elder abuse has been created and will have its first meeting in October.

“You have more targets for scammers, fraudsters, financial abusers, physical abusers, sexual abusers,” said Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt. “We really need more capacity and focus on that sort of unique basket of crimes. That’s why we’ve created this new council. I’ve done it under authority of the Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation statute.”

The council will meet at least quarterly, with its first meeting scheduled for October 4.

“One of the first priorities for the task force will be to focus on how we might take the multidisciplinary team concept and deploy it to combat elder abuse throughout more of the state,” Schmidt said.

Working together has worked well when those providers are in close proximity.

“Working groups that draw upon all different aspects of a community that are combating elder abuse, whether its medical professionals or senior services providers or law enforcement or prosecutors or social service workers, when you pull them all together, you get a much better picture of exactly what’s going on in a community.”

The important part is to figure out a way to get those people to be able to communicate even if they all can’t be in the same location at the same time, which has been difficult in the more rural parts of the state because of geography. To report suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation of an adult in the community, telephone the Kansas Protection Report Center at 1-800-922-5330 at DCF.