Learn how this office helps prevent the abuse and neglect of seniors
The New York State Office of Children and Family Services, through its Bureau of Adult Services (BAS), is responsible for the oversight of Protective Services for Adults (PSA) and other adult services provided through the local departments of social services, and local operations relative to Family-Type Homes for Adults (FTHA).
As noted on the BAS website, a primary task of BAS is to provide information about at-risk seniors, who often face multiple challenges including:
- Being physically frail, and unable to take care of themselves
- Mental illness, which may include life-long mental illness
- Cognitive impairment, which may have resulted from disease (such as Alzheimer’s) or a recent medical event (such as a stroke)
- Developmentally disabled
The BAS website is further designed to educate the public about matters such as what constitutes Adult Abuse, risk factors relating to abuse, and characteristics of those who are likely to be abusers of the elderly. For those who have a loved one who is elderly, this information is critical to know, especially the information concerning the factors relating to those who may be at high risk of abuse.
What Services Are Provided by BAS?
BAS, through PSA, often works in conjunction with other agencies concerning:
- Audits to determine risk of harm
- Post-victimization counseling
- Advocacy for mental and medical needs assessments
- Housing opportunities, including emergency housing
- Crisis intervention, including protective orders
- Long-term legal interventions, including guardianship
- Financial management services
What Can You Do?
If you have an elderly friend or family member, keep close ties with this loved one. Often, you will be their only voice in the case of maltreatment or abuse.
Abuse is not the only time that you should get involved. Learn about your loved one’s needs, and if there is not another family member or friend attending to all of such needs, consider contacting Adult Protective Services or other community groups that may provide services to the elderly.