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MAY IS ELDER ABUSE AWARENESS MONTH
Last year Adult Protective Services completed nearly 117,000 cases of elderly and disabled persons abuse in Texas, of which 84,439 were confirmed cases of abuse.
Abuse of the elderly and people with disabilities in domestic and institutional settings is a widespread problem, affecting hundreds of thousands of people across the country, said Community Engagement Specialist Gustavo Salinas.
"Anyone who suspects wrong-doing or abuse can report it at 800-252-5400. Once we get that report, we initiate the case within 24 hours," said Salinas. "The hotline is open 24/7 and we always have both English and Spanish operators."
Elder abuse is grossly underreported because the elderly find it very difficult to tell anyone and are usually ashamed and sometimes afraid to report it.
However, everyone working together can help reduce abuse and neglect of people who are elderly or who have disabilities, which is why Hidalgo County Commissioners Court proclaimed the month of May to be Elder Abuse Prevention Month.
"The elderly help preserve customs, convictions, and traditions and are vital and integral members of society," said Hidalgo County Public Affairs Manager Julia Benitez Sullivan. "They enrich our lives by sharing their experiences and wisdom."