As a state with a large number of men and women over 65, financial website Wallet Hub says Montana comes second in the country when it comes to protecting our senior population. against abuse.
KGVO spoke with analyst Jill Gonzalez on the issue of protecting people over 65.
“Elder abuse is a real and growing problem and some states are fighting harder than others to end it,” Gonzalez said. “We looked at 16 different indicators of protection from elder abuse in three categories. So, first of all, we just looked at the prevalence of elder abuse, gross neglect, and exploitative complaints compared to the financial elder abuse laws in place.
Gonzalez said she finds it surprising that a state with such a high population of seniors could provide them with so little protection.
“Montana is really important to watch because it’s one of the older age states so that should be of the utmost concern,” she said. “Yet it has some of the highest complaints of elder abuse, gross neglect and exploitation on a per capita basis, as well as the lowest total spending in the country on preventing human abuse.” elderly. So those two things just shouldn’t be happening. “
Gonzalez has said the Montana legislature must make protecting against elder abuse a high priority.
“The resources are there,” she said. “I mean, there’s high spending on prevention and expanding legal aid and funding programs, but that doesn’t really translate into laws. So there needs to be real financial laws, elder abuse laws and more abuse task forces, more laws allowing things like surveillance cameras in retirement homes, work groups and more. shelters for the elderly. The resources are there, but nothing is really being done with them.
Gonzalez pointed to the states that scored the highest in the Wallet Hub study, such as Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Vermont.
“They have great resources at their disposal,” she said. So high spending on elder abuse prevention, more funding for the long-term care ombudsman program per residents aged 65 and over, and those protections are in place. Everything from financial elder abuse laws, to elder abuse task forces, to good quality retirement homes.
Only Utah scored lower than Montana in the Wallet Hub study.
Read the Wallet Hub study here.
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