New Yorkers march to fight elder abuse as part of an aging awareness event at the New York City Department’s Sunnyside

Photo courtesy of the New York City Department of Aging

June 11, 2024 Author: Czarinna Andres

More than 200 New Yorkers gathered at Sunnyside to support older adults and advocate for an end to elder abuse on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) on Monday, June 10.

Organized by the New York City Department of Aging (DFTA) in partnership with Sunnyside Community Services (SCS), the celebration began with a community march along Queens Boulevard to raise awareness of the significant issue of elder abuse and express solidarity with victims of elder abuse.

SCS band members march along Queens Blvd. (Photo courtesy of NYC DFTA)

Participants march along Queens Blvd. (Photo courtesy of NYC DFTA)

The march was followed by a Support and Resource Fair at SCS, located at 43-31 39th St., which provided key information and resources to help prevent elder abuse, neglect and exploitation.

Assemblyman Ron Kim, chair of the Assembly Committee on Aging, was one of the speakers, along with New York Commissioner on Aging Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez and Senate Committee on Aging Chair Cordell Cleare.

(Left to right) New York City Commissioner on Aging Lorraine Cortes-Vazquez, AM Ron Kim and Senate Committee on Aging Chairman Cordell Cleare (photo courtesy of NYC DFTA)

“Elder crime can mean many different things: emotional abuse, neglect, physical abuse and sexual abuse, to name a few. However, the most common crimes committed against the elderly are rampant fraud and financial exploitation,” Kim said during his speech. “We are constantly working to raise awareness, partner with law enforcement and educate our communities on how to protect their loved ones from predatory schemes.”

Participants gathered at the 40th St. Station. at Queens Blvd. (Photo courtesy of NYC DFTA)

“Today’s event demonstrated that our community can provide critical support to victims and raise awareness to prevent further elder abuse,” Cortés-Vázquez said. “A coalition of survivors, advocates, community leaders and advocates shed light on elder abuse by offering victims vital resources to rebuild their lives.”

(Photo courtesy of NYC DFTA)

Judy Zangwill, executive director of Sunnyside Community Services, emphasized the importance of community awareness and education. “We are proud to partner with NYC Aging to support those who have experienced elder fraud. Today’s event and others like it play a critical role in educating the public about elder abuse and providing them with the necessary tools and information to combat it,” Zangwill noted.

The event is part of a series of activities sponsored by NYC Aging to raise awareness of elder abuse. These include lighting City Hall and other city buildings purple on June 15, as part of the official World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

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