In this Dec. 2, 2020, file photo, the Maine State House is seen at dawn from Capitol Park in Augusta. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

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Maine professionals providing adult protective services are currently only required to take the mandated reporter training once in their career. The new bill regarding mandated reporting, LD 35, is going to the Legislature that will require adult protective services to retrain every four years just like their counterparts who work for child protective services. Mandated reporters should have the training to refresh their minds on the rules and guidelines, just like other training that is required on a regular basis, according to their agency or licensure.

Research has shown that  1 in 10 adults aged 60 and older have experienced abuse. This means that tens of thousands of older Mainers experience elder abuse every year. Those who abuse elders are sadly those closest to them such as a caregiver or family member.

In our everyday lives, we become accustomed to how we do our jobs, and over time things may slip without being corrected. This complacency makes it important to maintain the knowledge of what elder abuse looks like, indicators of risk and how to address suspected abuse.

Implementing a requirement to take adult protective training would keep this knowledge at the forefront. The issue of adult/elderly abuse, neglect and exploitation is serious. We must protect our most vulnerable populations to ensure their safety. LD 35 is a step toward enhancing the safety of the adult/elderly populations.

Betsy Nadeau

Eagle Lake