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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                    
May 25, 2012

For More Information, Contact:
Lisa Gardiner (916) 651-4011 .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Phil Yost (650) 688-6834 .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)


SACRAMENTO – The Elder Financial Protection Network (EFPN), a nonprofit that works to combat elder financial abuse, honored State Senator Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) yesterday for his work protecting the state’s seniors.

Simitian was presented with the Donald N. Phelps Visionary Award at the 9th annual “Call to Action 2012” Thursday in San Francisco. At the event, seniors and representatives from banks, law enforcement, social services, advocacy organizations, and the legal community gathered to share solutions for stopping the financial exploitation of elders.

“It is extremely gratifying to be recognized by the Elder Financial Protection Network, which is working at the forefront to help and protect seniors,” said Simitian. “As California’s senior population continues to grow, we all have to work together to prevent these devastating crimes.”

In 2005, Simitian authored Senate Bill 1018, the Financial Elder Abuse Reporting Act, which requires that bank employees notify law enforcement or county adult protective services when elder financial abuse is suspected. During the first three years that the law went into effect, from April 2007 to December 2010, banks in California reported more than 26,000 cases of elder financial abuse. In 2011, Simitian authored Senate Bill 33 to make the law permanent.

In 2006, Simitian authored Senate Bill 1609, which protects seniors from elder financial abuse associated with reverse mortgages. In 2004, Simitian’s Assembly Bill 2611 made it easier to prosecute cases of elder financial abuse.

California has the largest senior population in the nation – nearly 4 million people over the age of 65. This figure is expected to almost double in the next 20 years, according to the California Department of Finance.