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On January 18th, 30 participants -police officers and partnering community agencies- will attend a new, five-day course on elder abuse, the first of its kind and length in Ontario. Kate Beveridge, Detective at the Toronto Police Service and co-ordinator of the Elder Abuse course spoke with CNPEA about its origins and core topics.

Toronto will soon be home to more than half a million residents aged 65 and over. The Toronto Police Service has seen the rate of crime against older adults increase and evolve over the years, including cases of neglect, assault, fraudulent transactions, financial abuse and predatory marriages, often facilitated by online scams. Elder abuse is a growing issue to an increasing section of society. In Detective Beveridge’s words, “older adults have become a very vulnerable population in our city and have to be protected.” The course, offered at the Toronto Police College, focuses on the risks seniors encounter and highlights best practices to address these types of offences, taking victim and witness sensitivity into account. The training is designed for officers and investigators, but also for representatives of supportive services and agencies who may find themselves acting on behalf of the victims (advocacy centres, Public Guardian and Trustee, banks, lawyers etc.).

Participants will be provided with the knowledge, skills and abilities to understand vulnerabilities and to resolve the crimes inflicted upon older adults. The course places an emphasis on understanding the complexity of the issues facing seniors, from ageism to fraud, predatory marriages, neglect, or assault, whether at home, in long-term care facilities or senior residences. The course also covers an exploration of consent, capacity and senior offenders. One of the outcomes for course participants is to acquire a set of tools to respond. The goal is not to see all crimes dealt with by the police and in a criminal court. The objective is also to "resolve, refer and restore" the family, in some cases involving family members. Partnering organizations can assist in restoring the family, through dialogue and restorative approaches. The complexity of this issue calls for a variety of responses, which is why the Toronto Police College has partnered with a wide array of organizations and elder abuse stakeholders. Partners invited to teach include:

Details and registration
See the course description here.
The Elder Abuse Course will run at the Toronto Police College from January 18 to January 22, 2016.
The course will run three times this year, with the next two instalments scheduled for May and October 2016.
The class capacity is 30 participants, with 20% of the class held for outside agencies.
The January course is filled and the next two courses are filling up.

To get more information and register for this course, contact
Kate Beveridge
Detective 2825, Toronto Police College, Investigative Training Section
70 Birmingham Street
Toronto, Ontario, M8V 3W6

416 808-4824


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