740-695-1075 Belmont County, Ohio

Adult Protective Services

What is Elder Abuse?

Elder abuse comes in many forms.  Typically, elder abuse refers to the intentional abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable adult.  It can be inflicted by a caretaker or any person in the adult’s life.

Belmont County Job and Family Services investigates elder abuse on victims aged 60 years and older.

Types of elder abuse

Neglect:   When a caretaker refuses or fails to provide a vulnerable adult with food, shelter, health care or protection.

Self-Neglect:  When an elderly person cannot or does not provide themselves with necessary care to avoid injury or illness.

Exploitation:  When a caretaker steals, misuses or conceals a vulnerable adult’s funds, property or assets.

Emotional abuse:  This includes verbal threats, intimidation, name-calling, harassment and isolation for friends and family.

Physical abuse: Inflicting injury by punching, slapping, kicking or using objects as weapons.

Sexual Abuse:  Nonconsensual touching, fondling or sexual activity that is forced or threatened.

Elderly adults have the right to make decisions that do not conform to social norms, as long as those decisions do not harm others.  They have the right to accept or refuse services.  The elderly have a right to retain all civil and constitutional rights – for example, the right to live their lives as they wish, to manage their own finances, to marry, etc. – unless a court decides otherwise.