College of Public Health students graduating

University of Kentucky Justice Center for Elders and Vulnerable Adults (JCEVA)

About Us

Welcome to the University of Kentucky Justice Center for Elders and Vulnerable Adults (JCEVA). The Center was launched Friday, June 12, 2009, by a visionary community of concerned citizens. These professionals are from all walks of life including law enforcement, financial and medical professionals, government officials and also your next door neighbor. The Justice Center for Elders and Vulnerable Adults (JCEVA) is housed at the University of Kentucky in the College of Public Health, under the direction of Dr. Pamela B. Teaster, Ph.D.

Our Vision and Mission

Creating a Safe Reality for the Elderly and Vulnerable

The Center is dedicated to research and educational efforts intended to make a difference in the lives of older Kentuckians. Textbooks and research speak to the huge problem of abuse, neglect and exploitation of the elderly whether it takes the form of emotional, financial, mental, physical, sexual or social mistreatment.

The Extent and Implication of Elder Abuse

Just the Facts

  • Currently, it is estimated that 38.8 million people over age 65 represent 12.4% of the U.S. population (13.2%) or about one in eight Americans is expected to grow to 20% of the population by 2030.
  • One in two million (between 2.3% - 5%) of the 38.8 million over age 65 is estimated to be injured, exploited, or otherwise mistreated every year.
  • Four of every five cases of elder abuse, neglect, exploitation, and/or self-neglect are expected to be unreported to authorities.
  • While underreported, the annual financial loss by victims of elder financial abuse is estimated to be at least $2.6 billion dollars.
  • The increased aging of the population, social changes, and technology advances will lead to a dramatic increase in the opportunity for a growing level of elder financial abuse.
  • The victims of elder financial abuse come from all walks of life, and this type of abuse affects elders regardless of gender, race, or ethnicity.
  • The JCEVA seeks to reduce abuse and neglect of the elderly and vulnerable adults.

Here's how you can help

We want to make a difference; a change that will measurably improve the lives of Kentucky elders and vulnerable adults. We invite you to join us in turning any of the following big ideas into reality. 

Research Efforts

  • Assessment outcomes research
  • Research criteria to support a first responders training program
  • Public policy research

Educational Efforts

  • Campaign for public awareness to educate the public about the problem of abuse, neglect and exploitation of the elderly regardless of what form (emotional, financial, mental, physical, sexual or social) is manifested.
  • Hot Line – to report abuse and offer assistance to elders and vulnerable adults.
  • Forensic Center – joint UK/UL project
  • Patient Navigator Program
  • “First Responders” Training Program – Law enforcement, coroners, police, fire and EMT; medical community (doctors, RN, ARNP, PA, social workers, social services, hospital and pharmacy); financial community (banks, trust, and brokers); and neighbors.