VPD: Security Tips for Seniors

  • Elder Abuse

In the past few years, more and more cases of abuse of the elderly have been brought to attention of the general public. What makes these crimes even worse for seniors is that the perpetrators generally are those close to them, be it family, friends or their appointed caregivers.

There are many different types of abuse, and some of the main ones are:

  1. Financial – This abuse can include a person being forced to change their will, or having their property sold or given away without their consent, or with forced consent. Also, it can involve withholding certain funds, such as a pension check, from the rightful recipient. No one has the right to do these things to you, even if you have given someone power of attorney, they are obligated to act in your best interests not theirs.
  2. Physical Abuse – This can encompass common assault and restraining the individual for long periods of time, either by locking them inside, tying them down, or over medicating them so they cannot get out of bed.
  3. Psychological or Emotional Abuse – No one should be subjected to insults, threats, intimidation, or yelling. However, this form of abuse can also include acts such as denying a person access to their friends and family, withholding certain rights and privileges. Or else it can encompass invading a person’s privacy by interfering with their mail, telephone calls, or money matters. It also manifests itself in the denial of a safe environment, food and personal care, hygiene, medical and legal services, or preventing opportunities for worship.
  • Purse Snatching

Purse snatching is one of the few crimes were seniors represent a greater proportion of those victimized. The best way to prevent becoming a target is to not carry a purse. However, for many people this is not practical. So if you are going to carry a purse here are some tips to both reduce the chance that you get targeted for this crime, and also to limit the damage if you are attacked.

  • walk with your head up high and with a sense of purpose, since attackers target those whom they consider to be easy prey
  • wearing the strap across your body makes it harder for an attacker to take the purse of off you, BUT if you are attacked it increases the likelihood of injury
  • carry keys and identifying documents in your pocket, so that if your purse is stolen the thieves can’t break into your house later on
  • do not carry large amounts of money if possible

 

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