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NCJ Number: 209669 Find in a Library
Title: Senior Services Officer
Journal: Law and Order  Volume:53  Issue:4  Dated:April 2005  Pages:78-81
Author(s): Jim Weiss; Mickey Davis
Date Published: April 2005
Page Count: 4
Type: Program/Project Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article describes the Senior Services program of the Largo Police Department (Florida), which features a full-time Senior Services Officer (SSO), who works only with seniors.
Abstract: The SSO position was established because of the special needs of the senior residents (over 59 years old), which constitute 36 percent of Largo's population. Their needs can include vulnerability to various scams; isolation; inability to care for themselves; and the need for ongoing, proactive services. The SSO received special training at the area Regional Community Policing Institute. All calls that involve an elderly citizen are referred to the SSO. Generally, these calls come from worried neighbors or family members. The SSO's duties include acting as a liaison or point of contact between a senior living alone and family members, helping to assess deficiencies in a senior's medical and social needs, and referring them to the proper agency for help. The SSO carries a list of resources with her on each call. Among the referral services are food pantries and soup kitchens; mental health, marriage, and family counselors; places to obtain furniture or clothing; housing services; substance abuse treatment; and financial services. Another major focus of the SSO is preventing and responding to the victimization of seniors through telemarketing scams and other scams that target seniors. Future plans for the Senior Services programs include an increase in the number of full-time SSO's and a program of automatic daily calling of isolated seniors. Failure to answer the phone will prompt an officer's visit to the residence.
Main Term(s): Specialized police operations
Index Term(s): Crimes against the elderly; Elderly victim services; Elderly victims; Florida; Police specialized training
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