"Protective Services "

The Rhode Island Department of Human Services, Division of Elderly Affairs (DEA) Protective Services Unit, 74 West Road, Cranston, RI 02920, is responsible for investigating complaints of abuse of Rhode Islanders 60 and older by a family member, caregiver, or person with duty of care. Abuse may be physical, emotional, sexual, financial exploitation, or abandonment.

Self-neglect occurs when a person is no longer able to care for himself/herself. Reports of self-neglect are also made to the DEA Protective Services Unit. The senior’s needs are assessed and necessary services can be provided.

Rhode Island law requires any person who has reasonable cause to believe that a senior has been abused, or is neglecting his or her basic needs, to report it to DEA. Failure to report abuse of a person 60 or older can result in a fine of up to $1,000.

Abuse and self-neglect reports can be filed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and on nights, weekends, and holidays, by calling 401-462-0555. Reports can be filed anonymously.

DEA also sponsors the After-Hours Emergency Response Program for Elders in Crisis. This service is available from 4:00 p.m. to 8:30 a.m., Monday through Friday, and on weekends and holidays. To report an elder who is in physical or emotional danger, call 462-0555.

Under Rhode Island law (R.I.G.L 42-66-10), DEA records pertaining to a person reported to be abused, neglected, exploited, or abandoned, are confidential and are not deemed public records.

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