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The National Center for Victims of Crime Announces Model Civil Statutory Provisions at Second Global Summit

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 16, 2016
Contact: 
Jane Lee  jlee@ncvc.org – 202-467-8749

Requests Comment on Statutory Provisions on Elder Financial Exploitation.

Washington, DC The Second Global Summit, in recognition of the 11th anniversary of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD), brought together global professionals to address and prevent elder financial exploitation. The Summit, convened by the National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA), the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (INPEA), and the National Center for Victims of Crime (National Center), was held Thursday, June 16, 2016 at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) The purpose of the event was to raise awareness, highlight current initiatives and share progress, especially regarding the announcement of The Model Civil Statutory Provisions on Elder Financial Exploitation.

The Huguette Clark Family Fund for Protection of Elders, a donor advised fund of the New York Community Trust, awarded funds to the National Center, in consultation with the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Commission on Law and Aging, to develop the Model Civil Statutory Provisions on Elder Financial Exploitation. The Model is a product of the 2014 Roundtable convened by the National Center. The project was led by Jane Lee, Director of the Financial Crime Resource Center at the National Center; Lori Stiegel, Senior Attorney of the ABA Commission on Law and Aging; and Matthew Andres, Professor and Director of the Elder Financial Justice Clinic at the University of Illinois. Liz Loewy, who spoke at this year’s global summit, provided her perspective as a former prosecutor of elder abuse.

The Model Civil Statutory Provisions on Elder Financial Exploitation proffers suggested legislative language which may be used to better define and address the current realities of elder financial exploitation, hold perpetrators civilly accountable and enhance the remedies available to elderly victims. The statutory provisions incorporate key elements identified in the field as critical in advancing civil justice, including a broader definition of elder financial exploitation and the availability of enhanced remedies, such as treble damages. “The Clark Family is deeply gratified that the Model Civil Statutes will provide one of the most effective tools to fight the financial abuse of vulnerable elders,” commented Ian Clark Devine, an advisor to the Huguette Clark Family Fund for Protection of Elders. The Model was announced at the Global Summit with a request for elder justice professionals to provide comments on the draft which will be made available on the National Center’s website in the coming weeks.

Speakers at the event included, among others, Elizabeth Podnieks, founder of WEAAD, who called for increased funding to support elder abuse research and prevention; Silvia Perel-Levin, UN Representative for the International Longevity Centre Global Alliance who emphasized the importance of dispelling myths regarding elder abuse; and Kathy Greenlee, Assistant Secretary for Aging, Administration for Community Living, who called for the inclusion of elder victims’ voices, “We can’t talk about human rights if we don’t bring the victim’s forward. This is what’s missing from the elder justice movement.”

If you or someone you know has been a victim of elder abuse, please call the VictimConnect Resource, a program of the National Center, to speak with a senior services victim assistance specialist who is specifically trained to provide reporting options, prevention strategies, and community resources to victims of elder abuse. Services can be accessed by calling or texting 1-855-4-VICTIM (1-855-484-2846) or by visiting www.victimconnect.org to chat or access information online. VictimConnect can be accessed anywhere in the United States Monday through Friday, 9:00-7:00pm EST.

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The National Center for Victims of Crime, established in 1985, is the nation’s leading resource and advocacy organization for crime victims and those who serve them. For more than 25 years, the National Center has led this nation’s struggle to provide crime victims with the rights, protections, and services they need to rebuild their lives.