Baraga County TRIAD and local law enforcement are working together to reduce criminal victimization of it’s seniors.
Their annual Community Resources Conference was held today and seniors in attendance say the information presented allows them to overcome the feeling of being powerless.
14,000 complaints of scams against seniors are reported to the Michigan Attorney’s General office each year.
Law enforcement initiated TRIAD programs help the community police itself through the direction of a SALT council, which stands for seniors and lawmen together.
“Seniors are prayed upon because they are lonely. If anyone calls and then calls the next day, they take that person to be their friend, then the next thing you know their money is gone items from the home are gone, sometimes they lose their home,” said Oedith Harris, Baraga County TRIAD Chairperson.
Distinguished judges, representatives from the attorney generals’ office, and community organizations spoke at the event.
Stopping the influx of charity scams and identity theft were at the top of the list of preventative measures to inform, educate and empower seniors.
“Things that can be done to avoid probate court involvement during life, like powers of attorney, patient advocate designations to trusts,” said Tim Brennan, Baraga County Probate Judge.
“That they have to slow down and not be so nice sometimes to some of the calls they get, some of the inquires about personal information,” said David Rumminger, Office of Attorney General, Senior Brigade Presenter.
“You know how they come and knock on your door with I want to fix your roof or gutter but we now have a form we are going to give them and say fill this out and we are going to send it to our prosecuting attorney and if they fill it out they are legit,” continued Harris.
The Baraga County TRIAD has been around for 12 years and they meet once a month at the Baragaland Senior Citizens Center in L’Anse.