Wyandanch, NY – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today stood with Long Island seniors to announce the Senior Financial Empowerment Act, new legislation to protect seniors from financial fraud.
“Senior fraud is a destructive and dangerous crime, in which scammers prey on vulnerable citizens, steal their personal information, and harm them financially with very few consequences,” said Senator Gillibrand. “Under the current system, when seniors report these crimes, the information often isn’t shared with the proper authorities, and scammers are able to continue committing these crimes against other seniors. We need to do everything we can to prevent and fight back against senior fraud. This new legislation would give seniors on Long Island the resources they need to be educated about this crime and tools to get help if they have been a victim of this crime.”
Every year, it is estimated that tens of thousands of seniors in New York are victims of financial scams and abuse. The Senior Financial Empowerment Act would ensure that seniors and their caregivers have critical information regarding financial abuse, standardize and improve the way elder financial abuse is reported, establish a national hotline that would advise seniors on where and how to report fraud, and provide more resources to combat financial exploitation of older adults before it happens.
“I applaud Senator Gillibrand for standing up for not only Babylon seniors, but all of New York State’s seniors against those who wish to take advantage of some of our most vulnerable residents,” said Babylon Town Supervisor Rich Schaffer. “This critical legislation will go a long way towards preventing and combatting financial fraud and abuse against our senior citizens.”
“As a provider of legal services to the elderly through our clinics, we have seen first hand the tragic consequences of senior fraud. We see this new legislation as an important tool to protect a uniquely vulnerable population,” said Harry Ballan, Dean and Professor of Law, Touro Law Center.