Vital Aging Network

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VAN Forum

Aging with Dignity and Respect: It's a Social Justice Issue

March 20, 2018
1:00 PM to 2:30 PM

Marit Peterson, JD
Program Director, Minnesota Elder Justice Center

East Side Neighborhood Services
1700 Second Street NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413

“Creating a just society includes treating older people as equal members and making sure
we are all connected to our communities as we age, so that
we can prevent and address elder abuse.”

—Frameworks Institute

quoteimage_294As we experience aging across our communities, there is an urgent need to plan for the prevention of elder abuse, neglect and financial exploitation. These crimes are significantly under reported, and have far-reaching impacts on victims and their families, friends and neighbors.

We all benefit from working together in our communities to prevent and respond to ageism and the abuse of older adults. Join us for this forum on prevention and intervention and learn how to make your neighborhood a safer place for all!

Download a flyer.



This forum is a joint effort of the Vital Aging Network, East Side Neighborhood Services and Minnesota Elder Justice Center.mnejc-esns-combined_480



Highlights from Marit's Presentation

Elder Abuse: toward a definition…

  • In general, elder abuse is any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to an older adult.
  • Defined by age, relationship, type of abuse
  • Victims are often on a continuum from active to having various medical, cognitive, mobility issues
  • 2/3 of perpetrators of elder abuse are family members, trusted individuals and/or caregivers

Types of abuse

  • Domestic Violence Late in Life
  • Physical abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Spiritual abuse
  • Financial Exploitation
  • Neglect
  • Self Neglect


  • 1,000,000 – 2,000,000 adults in later life in U.S. are victims of abuse1
  • 1 in 10 persons over the age 60 are victims of elder abuse2
  • Victims of elder financial abuse in U.S. lose close to $3 Billion each year3

1National Center of Elder Abuse:2005 Elder Abuse Prevalence and Incidence
2 National Institute of Justice: Elder Abuse as a Criminal Problem
3 Blancato, Robert: Violence Against Older Women and The Elder Justice Act; 3/04/12

View Marit's presentation (pdf)

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