The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Bureau) today released an online resource to help communities form networks to increase their capacity to prevent and respond to elder financial abuse. The Elder Fraud Prevention and Response Networks Development Guide (Networks Development Guide) offers planning tools, templates, and exercises to help communities create a collaborative network to fight elder fraud or refresh or expand an existing network.
The Networks Development Guide is an online tool that includes a meeting model on how to set up a retreat and training event to rally stakeholders and community leaders. Retreats planned over this summer, for instance, could happen as early as the fall, and the planning can be implemented remotely via teleconference, supporting engagement in rural communities and in consideration of the need for social distancing. The guide also provides resources for reconvening after the retreat to help community leaders take further action to expand network capabilities.
“The CFPB is focused on stopping financial exploitation of older Americans. We hope this resource will help launch networks in fighting elder financial exploitation in communities where networks don’t currently exist,” CFPB Director Kathleen L. Kraninger said. “For those communities with an existing network, the Networks Development Guide can help to refresh or realign its priorities and activities, or expand the diversity of its membership to include new stakeholders. We encourage the use of the guide by communities across the nation to build their capacity to prevent and respond to elder financial exploitation.”
The CFPB works with law enforcement, adult protective services, financial institutions, legal aid organizations, senior service providers, and other community stakeholders on the issue of elder financial exploitation. The CFPB has helped bring community stakeholders in communities across the country together to form or strengthen collaborative networks with a shared goal of empowering older people to protect themselves from financial harm. The Networks Development Guide underscores the Bureau’s commitment to increasing the prevention of and response to elder financial exploitation.
The CFPB will be offering presentations and webinars in the coming weeks to walk stakeholders through the Networks Development Guide and provide tips on how to use it.
Access the Networks Development Guide at www.consumerfinance.gov/eldernetworks.