Among our greatest challenges as a nation
today is making America a safe place
to grow old
.”  — Lisa Nerenberg




Lectures, workshops, keynotes

The following topics can be customized as keynote addresses, lectures, workshops, and forums for diverse groups and settings:


  • Undue Influence in Elder Abuse. Unfair persuasion has been used by totalitarian regimes, cults, domestic partners, scammers, and others for political, financial, or social gain. In recent years, it has been recognized as a tactic in elder financial abuse. In 2008, the San Francisco Superior Court conducted a study looking at undue influence from the psychological and legal perspectives. The presentation provides the results and introduces a tool to assist service providers assess situations of undue influence in elder abuse.
  • Improving States’ Response to Elder Abuse. States have the primary role in implementing policy and practice to prevent elder abuse and promote elder justice. In April 2010, 92 California service providers, researchers, educators, advocates, and policy makers assembled in San Francisco for the first statewide Elder Justice Summit, which led to the production of Improving California’s Response to Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation: A Blueprint and the launch of the California Elder Justice Coalition. The session describes the initiative and what advocates in other states are doing (and can do) to improve their response.
  • Elder Abuse Prevention: Trends, Challenges and Promising Practices. Drawing from decades of experience in program and policy development, Nerenberg describes such trends as the rise of the “elder justice movement,” the “criminalization” of elder abuse, the impact of the Supreme Court’s Olmstead decision, an increasingly multicultural elderly population, and heightened understanding of the “psychology of victimization” on practice. She describes promising practices including elder forensics centers, elder courts, family justice centers, new “hybrid” multidisciplinary teams, restitution recovery, asset investigators, mass marketing fraud prevention, support groups for victims, and culturally specific outreach.
  • Applying a Victims Rights and Victimology Framework to Elder Abuse. Those who work with victims of elder abuse are increasingly drawing upon the wisdom and resources of the victims rights movement and victimology to understand the impact of crime on victims, patterns of victimization, what victims want, and techniques for “making victims whole.” This session presents the fundamentals of victims rights, including restitution, victim impact statements, and notification, and how they can benefit victims of elder abuse. 
  • Forgotten Victims of Financial Elder Abuse. Although significant strides have been made in investigating financial abuse and holding perpetrators accountable, relatively little attention has focused on how financial abuse affects victims, what they need, and promising approaches for meeting their needs. This lack of attention has been attributed to victim blaming and widespread biases that financial crime is less serious than violent crimes. This workshops describes the multiple forms of financial abuse, ranging from mass marketing fraud and identity theft to the misuse and abuse of powers of attorney and trusts to exploit older adults. It further describes financial abuse victims’ need for mental health services, advocacy with creditors and housing providers, restitution recovery, and other services; and what communities are doing to meet these needs.
  • Collaborative Responses to Elder Abuse. No single agency or discipline has all the resources and expertise needed to effectively prevent elder abuse and treat its effects. Consequently, multidisciplinary teams, community coalitions, and interagency partnerships have been hallmarks of the field of abuse prevention. This workshop will describe the new generation of "hybrid," or specialized multidisciplinary teams, public-private partnerships, family justice centers, forensics centers, and other collaborative responses.    
  • Elder Abuse: The Basics and Beyond. This workshop is designed to familiarize professionals from a broad range of disciplines with the various forms of abuse committed against vulnerable and elderly adults, ranging from domestic violence and sexual assault to financial exploitation. It describes promising interventions and services to prevent abuse, treat its effects, and hold perpetrators accountable. Participants will develop skills in recognizing risk factors and indicators, service planning, and collaborating with professionals from diverse disciplines. Designed for those who are new to the field as well as those with little experience in working with elders, it blends state of the art findings and innovations with a basic overview of the field.
  •  A Global Perspective on Elder Justice. Countries around the world have diverse perspectives on elder abuse, and what can and should be done about it. This workshop explores how countries around the world are addressing elder abuse through the lenses of social justice, victimology, feminism, human rights and economic development.

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For more on promising practices and developments in the field, visit my blog, Prevent Elder Abuse.
Use Blog Browsing to see a selection of blog posts.