With as many as 13 out of every 14 elder abuse cases going unreported, and seniors especially vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic, the personal-finance website WalletHub on Dec. 2 released its report on 2020’s States with the Best Elder-Abuse Protections. New Jersey came out at the rock bottom, at 51.
To determine which states fight the hardest against elder abuse, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 16 key metrics. The data set ranges from “elder-abuse, gross-neglect and exploitation complaints” to “financial elder-abuse laws.”
Here is how New Jersey ranked on five of those metrics:
48th – Elder-abuse, gross-neglect and exploitation complaints
21st – Total expenditures on elder-abuse prevention
38th – Total long-term care ombudsman-program funding
32nd – Number of eldercare organizations and services
38th – Financial elderly-abuse laws
Abuse happens every day and takes many forms. But vulnerable older Americans are among the easiest targets for this misconduct, especially those who are women, have disabilities and rely on others for care. By one estimate, elder abuse affects as much as ten percent of the population older than 60, and many cases go unreported – as many as 13 of every 14 instances. Our elderly population is increasingly vulnerable this year during the COVID-19 pandemic, so it’s especially important to make sure they have adequate living conditions and don’t get taken advantage of financially.
The U.S. Census Bureau expects the population aged 65 and older to nearly double from 43.1 million in 2012 to 85.7 million in 2050, much to the credit of aging Baby Boomers who began turning 65 in 2011. And by just 2030, 1 in 5 U.S. residents will be retirement age.
For more about the report, visit wallethub.com/edu/states-with-best-elder-abuse-protection/28754.