EFPN Celebrates 10 years in 2010!

December 27, 2009

With the New Year approaching, it is important for all of us to stop and reflect on the past twelve months. This last year has been an exciting time for Elder Financial Protection Network, EFPN, and we are growing every day. And with the conviction of Anthony Marshall (the son of philanthropist Brooke Astor), the growing crime of elder financial abuse is getting more coverage in the national press than ever before. The stage is set for EFPN to be a national leader in the fight against elder financial abuse in the new decade.

As EFPN enters its 10th year of helping seniors to protect themselves from financial abuse, we could not be more proud of our accomplishments or more committed to the work that lies ahead.  Our great success is largely due to the dedication and support of our partners to whom we are so grateful.

We cannot do this important work without your continued support! Please click here to donate $10 to EFPN today – one for each year of service to our precious elders.  After all, ‘’Tis the season!


Bank of the West: Financial Literacy Helps Customers Protect Assets

October 20, 2008
Bank of the West

In 2007, Bank of the West created a consumer awareness program to help elderly customers become more aware about the crime of elder financial abuse. Working with Elder Financial Protection Network, Bank of the West designed a program that would fill attendees with as much information as possible in a two-hour seminar. We engaged local community resources to serve on panels and answer questions from the audience. We provided lunch and entertainment – and free document shredding. Elder Financial Protection Network and Bank of the West also made sure attendees left with information they could use and share with their friends.

We piloted the Be Aware seminar in three California communities – Fairfield, San Jose and Fresno – and were amazed by the public response. All three seminars exceeded our expectations for attendance – some standing room only. Attendees included bank customers, community seniors and county and city officials.

This year we encouraged our entire branch network – more than 685 banking locations in 19 states – to conduct Be Aware seminars in their communities. We made available on our Intranet a self-serve Be Aware Guide and Toolkit to help them along.

In 2008, Be Aware seminars were conducted in Salt Lake City, UT, Des Moines, IA, Danville, CA and Oklahoma City, OK. In November, Jenefer Duane will be the keynote speaker at a Be Aware seminar in Casa Grande, AZ.

The Be Aware program for the elderly got the attention of our internal business partners who repurposed it into a fraud prevention program aimed at our small business banking customer segment. The first small business fraud seminar was held in Albuquerque in May and this month another takes place in Las Vegas.

Be Aware seminars reflect Bank of the West’s belief that we have a responsibility to our customers to help them become better consumers. It is public relations currency that we willingly contribute, especially to the elderly whose faces often reflect those of our parents and grandparents.

Save the Date: Call To Action 2009

August 26, 2008

Save the Date: March 26, 2009 in San Francisco!

Following the incredible success of last year’s Call To Action event, Elder Financial Protection Network is delighted to announce the date for Call To Action 2009!

More details will be posted in the coming weeks, so check back often. This is going to be an event not to be missed!

2008 Elder Abuse Symposium

August 26, 2008

EFPN Sponsors CDAA 2008 Elder Abuse SymposiumEFPN is pleased to sponsor the California District Attorneys Association’s 2008 Elder Abuse Symposium.

December 2 – 5, 2008
Hyatt Regency Fisherman’s Wharf — San Francisco, CA

The CDAA Elder Abuse Symposium is the largest elder abuse education gathering in California. This three and one-half day multi-topic seminar is designed for prosecutors investigators, law enforcement, adult protective services administrators and case workers, state and local agencies, and victim advocates. The symposium will provide information on how to identify, investigate, and prosecute cases involving elder and dependent adult abuse. While serving as an introduction to those new in the field, this symposium will also address the latest issues and techniques for the more experienced in elder abuse prosecution.


Investing in Prevention

June 16, 2008

In honor of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day today, please support our organization’s work to protect seniors by making a charitable contribution to EFPN. Alternatively, consider sponsoring a ‘Be Wise’ community education event for seniors. In addition to helping prevent elder financial abuse, your company or organization can receive further benefits by partnering with EFPN including:

  • Affiliation with a reputable, proactive and progressive nonprofit organization
  • Increased brand awareness from partnership and program sponsorships
  • Increased goodwill and positive image recognition
  • Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) credit for banks

Download the Partnership/Sponsorship list (pdf: 158k).

Soon, we will be announcing the release of two new cutting-edge products to support our partners in raising awareness in their respective communities. A consumer awareness toolkit is nearing completion and will be released this summer. Updated staff training materials will also be available soon.

For information about contributing or volunteering or to schedule a training program for your community group or professional organization, please call 415.956.5556.

Fighting the Crime of the 21st Century – Elder Financial Abuse

June 15, 2008

By: Jenefer Duane
Founder and CEO, Elder Financial Protection Network

As the United States’ population of persons over the age of 60 surges to the forefront of the economy in terms of retirement assets, so does the need to build an integrated response system to protect older adult community members from the growing crime of elder financial abuse.

Dubbed by experts to be “The Crime of the 21st Century,” elder financial abuse is the fastest growing form of elder abuse. Financial abuse occurs when a person or entity takes or keeps an elder’s property for wrongful use or with the intent to defraud. Most often perpetrated by self-interested family members, caregivers, con artists and unscrupulous salespersons, financial abuse includes the fraudulent misuse of powers of attorney, ATM theft, real estate fraud, investment fraud, contractor fraud, and telemarketing fraud…and the list goes on. The incidence of financial abuse is growing at an alarming rate and, according to the Journal of American Medicine, an elder who has been abused is three times more likely to die as a result.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is June 15, 2008, coordinated by The International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (INPEA). It also is Father’s Day, a fitting opportunity for the launch of this global campaign to increase awareness and compel us to reflect on the plight of an estimated 5 million victims of elder abuse in this country alone. The Institute of Aging in San Francisco recently estimated that 50% of cases of elder abuse involve financial exploitation. Elder Abuse Awareness Day helps us to come to terms with this growing socio-economic crisis and challenges us to commit ourselves to the fight to protect our greatest generation – our treasured senior citizens.

Today, with a “baby boomer” becoming turning 60 every 8 seconds, financial abuse is a serious threat to the safety and independence of all seniors. It is estimated that just 1 in 100 cases of financial abuse is reported. The burgeoning demographics of the aging population, combined with the prospect of a 10% state budget cut for senior programs including Adult Protective Services, further underscores the need for collaborative partnerships that focus on the continued development of a social network that supports and enhances the independence of our elder community members.

For the past 10 years, Elder Financial Protection Network (EFPN) has facilitated the sharing of best practices in elder financial abuse prevention between financial institutions and social service and law enforcement agencies, and has supported new initiatives, state-wide and beyond, that address the issue of elder financial abuse. EFPN continues to advocate for increased cooperation and collaboration between public and private sectors. We need your support in order to continue our work.

There is no excuse for elder abuse! Report suspected abuse to local Adult Protective Services and visit our website www.bewiseonline.org for a list of reporting resources. If you believe an elder is in danger or a crime has been committed, call the police.

Fall Newsletter – Elder Financial Literacy: Prevention Through Education

January 11, 2008

Seniors learning Financial Literacy at seminar “It was worth a million dollars!!!” wrote one of 190 seniors who participated in an EFPN community education program presented in Fresno last month. This year alone, several thousand California seniors learned how elder financial abuse is perpetrated, how it can be prevented, and how it should be reported thanks to educational programs made possible by our sponsoring partners and foundation grants. Helen Karr, an elder abuse specialist in the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office, believes that elder financial literacy is critical in the fight against this crime. Read the rest of this entry »