Adult Protective Services and Elder Abuse

Elder abuse may be physical, financial or psychological. Elder abuse may be committed by a younger caregiver or household member upon an older friend or relative, or may occur between two older people who live together. Elder abuse can occur even when there is genuine love and affection between the people involved.

Some risk factors include vulnerability such as advanced age, frailty, dependency on caregiver, social isolation and substance abuse.

Elder abuse may take many forms, including:

  • Misuse of funds
  • Theft, fraud
  • Neglect, including unnecessary use of restraints
  • Yelling insults or threats
  • Physical or sexual abuse
  • Withholding food or medication
  • Abandonment

Victims of abuse are often reluctant to tell anyone about the situation because they are afraid or ashamed. Anyone who suspects elder abuse in Washington County should report it by calling the Department of Human Services, Seniors and People with Disabilities, at 503-640-3489. Callers' names are kept in strict confidence and only released on court order.

The Elder Abuse Prevention Act protects citizens ages 65 or older who have been or are being threatened, mistreated or abused, or are in danger of mistreatment or physical abuse.

The courts can:

  • Order immediate eviction of the abuser
  • Order the abuser to stop contacting you
  • Help you get back the cost of evicting the abuser
  • Order the abuser to pay you back triple the damages caused to you

Facility abuse complaints: Click to research substantiated facility abuse complaints here.

Elder Safe helps victims ages 65 and older after a crime is reported to the police and continues to help them through the criminal justice system. Based at the Sheriff's Office, Elder Safe collaborates with the District Attorney's Office and the Department of Aging and Veteran Services and all city police departments to coordinate services. For more information, contact Elder Safe at 503-846-6048.