Older and Vulnerable Adult Abuse Policy
Policy No: 05/08
Effective Date: July 26, 2000
Amended Date: November 26, 2003
Amended: January 23, 2008
The Regional Municipality of York Police Services Board (‘the Board’) is committed to the protection of older and vulnerable adults in the Region of York.
Older and vulnerable adults have the right to live with dignity, and in safe homes and communities. They should have the opportunity to enjoy their lives and to live without fear of abuse or exploitation.
The Board regards the abuse or exploitation of any older or vulnerable adult to be a serious crime that will not be tolerated in the Region of York. Therefore, the Board vigorously supports efforts by the York Regional Police to protect older and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.
Furthermore, the Board recognizes that the safety of older and vulnerable adults is a shared responsibility of citizens and the York Regional Police. The Board encourages all citizens to report any incident, or suspicions, of older or vulnerable adult abuse immediately to the York Regional Police.
Policy requirements set out in this document shall form part of the Police Services Board Policy Manual and the Chief of Police shall comply with these requirements in directing the York Regional Police.
1. Application and Scope
This policy applies to the Chief of Police and Members of York Regional Police.
This policy supports the right of older and vulnerable adults to live in a community free of abuse and exploitation.
The policy provides guidelines to the Chief of Police in establishing procedures on the investigation of older and vulnerable adult abuse.
3. Statutory Authority
Section 29 of the Adequacy Standards Regulation requires a Police Services Board to have a policy on elder and vulnerable adult abuse.
In this policy, older adult includes any reference to seniors or elderly adults.
4.1 York Regional Police defines an older adult as any person 60 years of age or older.
4.2 Older adult abuse is defined as any act that harms or threatens to harm the health or well-being of an older adult. Forms of abuse include psychological, financial and physical abuse, as well as neglect and sexual assault. (Ref. Ontario Seniors’ Secretariat)
4.3 Vulnerable adult refers to a person who depends on others to meet every day needs because he/she has a mental illness or developmental disability, or requires long-term or indefinite care due to age or medical condition. (Ref. Ontario’s Policing Standards Manual 2000)
5. Policy Guidelines
5.1 The protection of older and vulnerable adults is a priority of the York Regional Police.
5.2 The Board expects the York Regional Police to collaborate with other police services, seniors’ help organizations, victims’ services, government ministries, and private sector organizations in preventing older and vulnerable adult abuse, including fraud awareness and prevention.
5.3 The Board and the Chief of Police shall review resources allocated to the prevention, detection and investigation of offences against older and vulnerable adults in developing Business Plans for the York Regional Police.
6. Responsibilities - Chief of Police
6.1 The Chief of Police shall, where possible, work in partnership with the local Crown, municipalities, community and social service agencies/providers, businesses, seniors’ and other local organizations to develop programs for preventing and responding to complaints of older and vulnerable adult abuse, including fraud awareness and prevention.
6.2 The Chief of Police shall develop and maintain procedures that require that investigations into older or vulnerable adult abuse be undertaken and managed in accordance with the York Regional Police criminal investigation management plan.
6.3 The Chief of Police shall ensure that officers investigating older and vulnerable adult abuse have the requisite knowledge, skills and abilities.
7. Reporting Requirements
7.1 The Chief of Police shall report to the Board on the incidence of older and vulnerable adult abuse and the effectiveness of prevention and enforcement strategies in reducing this offence in York Region in the York Regional Police Annual Report.
7.2 The Chief of Police shall also advise the Board of exceptional circumstances, when they arise.Back to Adequacy Standards