(Note: The pdf for the issue in which this article appears is available for download: Bifocal, Vol. 36, Issue 1.)
Elder financial exploitation crosses all social, economic and cultural boundaries. Older Hispanics, like other older adults, increasingly are targets of financial abuse and scams by a broad spectrum of perpetrators. A 2012 study found that 17% of Hispanic seniors are victims of financial exploitation, and that limited English proficiency is a factor that contributes to the vulnerability of older Hispanics.
Nearly 1.5 million—or two-in-five—older Hispanics have limited English language proficiency and speak Spanish only. Their limited access to trusted information and resources in Spanish hampers their ability to detect, respond to and report abuse.
There are Spanish versions of two resources that can help Spanish-speaking seniors, their family members and other caregivers, and the professionals and organizations that work with them:
Money Smart para Adultos Mayores (Money Smart for Older Adults)
An educational program with the FDIC that teaches older adults and their caregivers how to spot scams and frauds, and prevent financial exploitation. The translated guide can be used as a self-study guide or delivered as a training in a group setting.
Cómo Administrar el Dinero de Otras Personas (Managing Someone Else’s Money)
A set of four guides for financial caregivers—government fiduciaries, agents under power of attorney , guardians of property and trustees —to help them understand their duties, and how to prevent and respond to financial exploitation.
These resources are available in English and Spanish for download and free print copies are also available at: http://www.consumerfinance.gov/. ■