Rotary Club Of Los Angeles Raises Awareness About Elder Financial Abuse
The L.A. County District Attorney's Office and Rotary Club of Los Angeles have partnered to create training material for all local Rotary Clubs, so that they can educate seniors about the dangers of financial scams.
Thanks to the partnership of the Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey and the Rotary Club of Los Angeles, Rotary Clubs around the county have a new resource available to them, a public education campaign to help seniors avoid financial scams.
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Lacey’s Office and the Rotary Club of Los Angeles, also known as LA5, have created pamphlets and training DVDs to help Rotary Club volunteers bring this important message to the seniors in their area.
Statistics reveal that one in five seniors has been the victim of a financial scam. The data also suggests that only one in 14 such incidents is reported to authorities.
District Attorney Lacey commended LA5 for its commitment to protecting seniors against financial fraud through education and outreach.
"The Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office is pleased to team with LA5 and our seniors," Lacey said. "If we can save one senior from experiencing the agony of losing their life's savings then we have served our community well."
LA5 also will work with other nonprofits to distribute printed materials to homebound seniors. The 3,000-member club and the District Attorney's Office have a shared goal of deterring financial abuse against the elderly.
Rotary Club of Los Angeles--one of 65 other rotary clubs in the county--is part of Rotary International, a global human services organization.
A reported 70 percent of our nation's wealth belongs to seniors, according to a press release from the District Attorney’s Office.
As a result, predators often target the elderly. Physical and cognitive limitations, trusting dispositions and loneliness are some factors that make elderly persons particularly susceptible to financial crimes, the release said.
The District Attorney's Office website offers these tips for seniors to avoid financial scams.
- Cancel all credit cards you are not using.
- Never keep the Personal Identification Number for your ATM card in your wallet. If you need to write it down, be sure to keep it in a secure place.
- Never give your credit or ATM cards to a family member or a friend to buy things for you. Whenever possible, give them cash or reimburse them with a check.
- Try to balance your checkbook or have a trusted family member or friend do it for you on a monthly basis. Immediately inform your bank or credit card companies of any activity that does not appear to be your own.
"We are honored to work with District Attorney Jackie Lacey and her team as partners in this important Senior Scam Awareness Outreach project," said Ken Chong, President of the Rotary Club of Los Angeles.
At a Monday morning news conference, District Attorney Lacey shared a personal account about her mother who was scammed over the phone. The scam artist told the District Attorney's mother that one of her grandchildren had been jailed overseas and needed money wired immediately.
"Financial abuse is especially harmful because, for many seniors, recovering from a large financial loss can be almost impossible," Lacey said. "Through this program, we aim to stop financial abuse by arming seniors with the knowledge necessary to avoid predators."
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