New program launching to help victims of elderly abuse

HOUSTON – By: Sarah Pearce

In honor of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, Harris County Protective Services is launching a new program that is the first of its kind.

As the senior population grows, the frequency of abuse to the elderly is expected to grow with it, according to Harris County Protective Services. In order to help senior victims of abuse, neglect and exploitation in Harris County, HCPS is introducing The Senior Justice Assessment Center.

The Assessment Center is home to experts in geriatric medicine, protective services, civil and criminal prosecution and law enforcement working together to protect vulnerable senior citizens and to increase prosecution of elder abuse.

“Ultimately, we want Harris County to be a community where it’s safe to grow old,” HCPS said. The goal is to ensure the dignity of seniors by increasing awareness, education and prosecution of elder abuse."

The center is modeled after multi-disciplinary centers for children. The new center was made possible through a grant awarded by the Office of the Governor’s Criminal Justice Division.