Rhode Island CUs Sound the Alarm on Elder Financial Abuse; Join with Lt Gov McKee to Promote CU Senior Safeguard

The Credit Unions of Rhode Island along with Lt Governor Dan McKee, Johnston Mayor Joe Polisena, N. Providence Mayor Charles Lombardi, and CCUA President Paul Gentile gathered yesterday at Noon at the Johnston Senior Center to call attention to elder financial abuse and CU Senior Safeguard, a credit union-sponsored resource designed to empower people to recognize such abuse and take action.

Surrounded by more than 50 seniors at the Center, and a news media contingent from local Providence stations, the delegation spoke about the increasing incidents of scams and fraud being perpetrated against seniors.

Gentile recognized the efforts of all credit unions in Rhode Island that have seen their frontline staff become certified in CU Senior Safeguard, a dramatic move to ensure they are doing all that's possible to protect elders from financial harm. He also invited all residents of Rhode Island to become more familiar with elder financial abuse and how to take action by participation in the credit union online program, CU Senior Safeguard, offered freely to all on the Better Values - Better Banking website.

“Elder financial abuse is an invisible epidemic impacting thousands of Rhode Islanders and seniors across the country. Unfortunately, because of the sensitive nature of this crisis, many cases go unreported and unresolved,” said Lt. Governor McKee. “As Chair of our state’s Long-Term Care Coordinating Council, I challenge all Rhode Islanders to join my office and the Credit Unions of Rhode Island in spreading the word on how to identify elder financial abuse and how to stop it.”

"The Credit Unions of Rhode Island are grateful to Lt. Governor Dan McKee for his support in calling attention to elder financial abuse," said Paul Gentile, CCUA President/CEO. "By sounding the alarm on this growing travesty perpetrated against seniors and by making CU Senior Safeguard available to all the people of Rhode Island, credit unions hope to lead the way in our efforts to protect seniors and their life savings from loss, abuse and scams."

Yesterday's ‘Lunch & Learn’ garnered much publicity from the local Rhode Island news media. Similar efforts to convene Lunch & Learn gatherings are in the planning stages in Massachusetts (Greenfield, Boston, Worcester, and the Berkshires), New Hampshire (Concord, Manchester and the Seacoast) and Delaware (Wilmington and Dover). Expect announcements in the Daily Scan about new gatherings as plans and dates are finalized.