This Resource Guide was created by the Elder & Dependent Adult Abuse Prevention Council of Santa Barbara County in association with the Central Coast Commission for Senior Citizens, Area Agency on Aging
Recognizing the Signs…
- Threatening, belittling, or controlling caregiver behavior that you witness
- The caregiver isolates the elder: refusing to allow access to visitors, mail phone, etc.
- Uncharacteristic behavior such as withdrawal or changes in alertness.
- Bruises around breasts or genitals
- Unexplained sexually transmitted diseases or unexplained vaginal or anal bleeding
- Torn, stained, or bloody clothing
Neglect by Caregivers or Self-Neglect
- Unusual weight loss, malnutrition, dehydration
- Untreated physical problems, such as bed sores
- Unsanitary living conditions: dirt, bugs, soiled bedding and clothes
- Poor hygiene, lack of clean or appropriate clothing
- Unsafe living conditions (no heat or running water, faulty electrical wiring, fire hazards)
- Desertion of the elder at a public place
- Significant or unauthorized withdrawals from the elder’s accounts
- Sudden changes in the elder’s financial condition
- Items or cash missing from the household
- Suspicious changes in wills, power or attorney, titles, and policies
- Addition of names to the elder’s signature card
- Unpaid bills or lack of medical care, although the elder has enough money to pay for them
- Financial activity the elder couldn’t have done, such as ATM withdrawals by a bedridden account holder
- Unnecessary services, goods, or subscriptions
- Unusual change in spending habits
- Constant phone calls from various phone numbers
- Elder/adult suddenly wiring money
- Large accumulation of lottery mail
- Elder/adult secretive about a relationship with someone they have not met in person
- Signs of being restrained, such as rope marks on wrists
- Unexplained signs of injury such as bruises, welts, scars, broken bones or sprains
- Over or under medication
- Broken eyeglasses or frame
- Caregiver’s refusal to allow you to see the person alone
- Report of drug overdose or apparent failure to take medication regularly
- Physical or chemical restraints for caregiver’s convenience
- Stay Active with your local senior center. It can be a valuable source of information.
- Plan for your care as you age. Identify reliable people who can provide assistance if needed.
- Review your finances regularly. Be extremely cautious when selecting “trustworthy” individuals to help manage your affairs when needed.
- Participate in community activities. Volunteering is a great way to have contact with others and make friends.
- Keep your power of attorney for finance and health care in order and select a trustworthy person(s).
- Don’t put off preparing your future physical and financial needs.
- Don’t accept personal care from anyone in exchange for property or assets without a lawyer or other trusted advocate to witness the transaction.
- Don’t allow others to keep details of your finances from you.
- Don’t give out personal or financial information to people you don’t know, especially over the phone.
- Don’t sign legal documents that you do not understand.
- Dial 911 to report elder abuse or neglect to the Police NOW if the abuse is immediate and life-threatening.
- Elder Abuse Hotline at 805-568-2442 to report allegations of abuse when you are unsure of where to call.
- Adult Protective Services, County of Santa Barbara, 844-751-6729 if you suspect elder abuse in the community.
- Long Term Care Ombudsman 805-922-1236 report suspected abuse occurring at board and care homes, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities. Statewide Ombudsman after-hours crisis line: 800-231-4024.
- Senior Connection, a senior information & assistance service 1-805-928-2552
- District Attorney Elder Abuse Unit/Fraud Hotline 805-568-2442 In Spanish 805-346-7454
- Santa Barbara County DA Victim-Witness Assistance Program
- Santa Barbara 805-568-2400
- Santa Maria 805-346-7529
- Lompoc 805-737-7910
- Public Guardian 805-568-2790
- Long Term Care Ombudsman 805-922-1236
- Alzheimer’s Association 1-800-272-3900
- Adult Protective Services 1-844-751-6729
- Santa Barbara 805-681-4550
- Santa Maria 805-346-8303
- Lompoc/Santa Ynez 808-737-6020
- To report suspected elder/dependent adult abuse 844-751-6729
- Legal Aid Foundation of Santa Barbara County
- Santa Maria 805-922-9909
- Santa Barbara 805-963-6754
- Lompoc 805-736-6582
- Lawyer Referral Service 805-569-9400
- California Rural Legal Assistance 805-922-4563
- Domestic Violence Solutions for Santa Barbara County
- Santa Barbara 805-964-5245
- Santa Maria 805-925-2160
- Santa Ynez 805-686-4390
- Lompoc 805-736-0965
- Family Services Agency of Santa Barbara County
- Santa Maria 805-928-1707
- Santa Barbara 805-965-1001
- Lompoc 805-735-4376
- Center for Successful Aging – Senior Peer Counseling 805-898-8080
- Pacific Pride Foundation Countywide 805-963-3636
- Tribal Health Clinic, Santa Ynez 805-688-7070
- Veterans Service Office, County of Santa Barbara
- South County 805-681-4500
- North County 805-354-6000
- V.A. Caregiver Support Line 855-260-3274
Financial Fraud and Exploitation Resources
Credit Card Fraud
If you are a victim of identity theft, or you want to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft, call these agencies to freeze new accounts being opened in your name. Also, for disputes regarding your credit record.
- Experian: www.experian.com 888-397-3742
- Equifax: www.equifax.com 800-525-6285
- TransUnion: www.transunion.com 800-680-7289
- Free Annual Credit Report: Request a free credit report: www.annualcreditreport.com877-322-8228
- U.S. Postal Inspection Services
Report mail fraud: http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov877-876-2455
- Opt-out from unsolicited mail, pre-approved credit card, and insurance offers:888-567-8688
- Direct Marketing Association Inc.
Remove name from mailing & emailing list: www.dmachoice.org
- Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
Telemarketing fraud/identity theft877-382-4357
- Do Not Call Registry.
Stop telemarketers from calling you: www.donotcall.gov888-382-1222
- Internet Crime Complaint Centerwww.ic3.gov
- California Department of Business OversightSeniors Against Investment Fraud (SAIF)866-275-2677
- Concerns about brokers, investment advisers financial planners, mortgage lenders and bill payers: www.corp.ca.gov
- Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) BrokerCheck Check the background of a broker or brokerage: 800-289-9999
- California Department of Consumer AffairsCheck licenses for doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals: www.dca.ca.gov800-952-5210
- California Department of InsuranceInsurance concerns: www.insurance.ca.gov800-927-4357
- California Department of Real EstateReal estate concerns: www.dre.ca.gov213-620-2072
- California Public Utilities CommissionUtility complaints: www.cpuc.ca.gov/puc800-649-7570
- Contractors State License BoardConcerns regarding licensed and unlicensed contractors: www.cslb.ca.gov800-321-2752
- Better Business Bureau of the Tri-CountiesFosters honest & responsive relationships between businesses and consumers. Dispute resolution. Community education. Scam tracker. www.bbb.org805-963-8657
The mission of the Elder & Dependent Adult Abuse Prevention Council of Santa Barbara County is to prevent elder and dependent adult abuse and to develop a comprehensive and collaborative community response to abuse in Santa Barbara County.