Training

Framework

We provide training on elder abuse to responding officers, investigators, supervisors, victim support specialists, and agency volunteers.

We have established, and routinely update, a library of resource materials and professional literature on elder abuse and law enforcement response.

Our training related to elder abuse addresses attitudes, biases, and myths about aging and the resulting barriers to effective response.

We provide training and opportunities to practice how to recognize types of abuse and establish the degree of danger involved.

Content

Our officers receive specific training about:

Recognizing the multiple ways that perpetrators of elder abuse try to manipulate and deceive law enforcement and other interveners

Common justifications that abusers present, including caregiver stress, and the importance of keeping their focus on determining whether a crime has been committed

Recognizing and understanding the complex circumstances that victims face in making decisions about whether to leave an abuser or return to live with an abuser

Interview approaches and techniques for elder abuse cases

How to correctly document a person’s functional capacity to understand risk, make decisions, and give informed consent to investigation and services

Victim indicators of possible abuse, including physical signs or behavior cues, such as bruises, inconsistent explanation of circumstances, or reports of money missing

Suspect indicators of possible abuse, including physical signs or behavior cues, such as wounds from victim’s self-defense or unwillingness to let officers interview the victim alone

Environmental indicators of possible abuse, including surroundings and condition of the home, such as strong odors of urine and/or feces, lack of assistive devices, locks outside of doors

Observing and documenting the scene in ways that take the implications of Crawford v. Washington into account.

Recognizing and investigating forms of elder sexual abuse

Recognizing and investigating forms of domestic violence in later life

Applying dominant aggressor considerations to elder abuse cases

Recognizing and investigating unique aspects of elder physical abuse, including over-medicating, force feeding, restraining, smothering, and bruising

Physical Abuse

A screenshot of an LEO from an informational video

Financial exploitation as a form of elder abuse

Investigating elder abuse in care facility settings, whether by and against individuals or through management and operational practices

Application and limitations of elder abuse and domestic violence risk assessment tools

Preparing for and testifying about elder abuse cases in court

Maximizing safety for undocumented immigrant victims of elder abuse

911 call-takers and dispatchers receive training on the dynamics of elder abuse and related communication and response strategies.

Jail officers receive training on considerations in booking and release of elder abuse perpetrators of all ages.

We provide an annual update and review of the widest range of state and federal laws that support investigation, arrest, and prosecution of elder abuse cases.

Methods

An interdisciplinary team representing law enforcement, prosecution, domestic violence and sexual assault services, and APS or aging network specialists delivers training on elder abuse response and investigation.

We utilize a variety of approaches in providing and supporting training on elder abuse and law enforcement response, including basic officer and field training, roll call or shift change, and web-based or other distance learning.

We use hands-on methods such as scenarios and role plays to practice investigation and response to elder abuse.

Community connections

We participate in and provide cross-training with prosecution, the aging services network, senior organizations, and domestic abuse and sexual assault services agencies.

We provide training on elder abuse and the law enforcement response to a variety of people who may come in contact with older victims in the course of their work, such as home health care providers and meal volunteers, beauticians, and bank tellers.

Advance to next section: Community Collaboration

To print the full NCALL Self-Assessment, click here. 

Additional resources