Research on Elder Abuse Among American Indian and Alaska Native Populations

Source: International Association for Indigenous Aging

Published: 2019


Webinar host: National Center on Elder Abuse at the Keck School of Medicine of USC

Many tribal communities are experiencing a silent epidemic of abuse of older adults. Limited research on elder abuse has suggested higher rates of abuse among tribal elders, yet little is known about promising strategies that can be implemented to prevent or manage cases of abuse. This webinar will provide an overview of elder abuse in Indian Country, including recent research identifying new national-level prevalence rates and predictors of abuse among American Indian and Alaska Native elders. Rates of various types of elder abuse for Native Americans– almost double that of overall findings from original study findings — will be shared. The unique, complex context that intersects to shape abuse correlates for tribal elders such as history of trauma, social support, and emotional problems will be discussed. Findings from a recent national needs assessment focused on screening and management of elder abuse in tribal health settings that included tribal health care providers, elder advocates, Title VI staff, and tribal Adult Protection Services will also be shared. Presenters will identify promising practices and strategies identified in the needs assessment, as well as a series of recommendations that can be implemented in local tribal communities to help combat elder abuse.


Jolie Crowder, PhD, MSN, RN, CCM

Jolie Crowder, has worked for The International Association for Indigenous Aging for nearly a decade and is a recent doctoral graduate of the University of Virginia School of Nursing. Her current research and practice focus is on issues related to enhancing the well-being of American Indian and Alaska Native elders, including elder abuse, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, and public health priorities for Native elders. She has extensive experience developing resources for use in Indian Country including publicity toolkits, training materials, and outreach strategies. She has soon-to-be peer reviewed published articles on elder abuse among American Indian elders and Alzheimer’s and dementia, and served as lead author on two recent articles on Alzheimer’s and brain health promotion published on Indian Country Today.

Kendra Kuehn, MSW

Kendra Kuehn, is Policy Analyst for the International Association for Indigenous Aging (IA2) and Health Benefits ABCs. She has experience from local to federal level projects. She serves as an advocate for IA2 at the national level regarding elder abuse and aging issues among American Indian and Alaska Natives. Kendra supports policy and data analysis as well as business administration within IA2. Kendra also provides policy expertise and support to the National Adult Protective Services Association (NAPSA) and the American Association of Service Coordinators (AASC). Prior to joining HBABCs Kendra received her Master of Social Work from Catholic University of America’s National Catholic School of Social Service where she interned with the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project in Washington, DC and the U.S. Administration for Community Living’s Office of Elder Rights.

Linda Carson, PhD, MPH, BSN

Linda D. Carson, is a researcher and principal investigator with the International Association for Indigenous Aging. She is a former Associate Professor in the College of Public Health at the University of Oklahoma and Center Coordinator for the American Indian Diabetes Prevention Center, funded by the N.I.H. National Institute for Minority Health and Disparities. Dr. Carson holds degrees in Nursing, Public Health Epidemiology, and Aging Studies. Dr. Carson’s research is interdisciplinary and focuses on cross-cultural health communications, especially as these relate to elder populations Past research includes funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as P.I. for a project that examined the efficacy of utilizing community health workers to improve diabetes adherence among elder populations in rural Oklahoma, and research with diabetic American Indian elders and their health care providers.

Webinar PowerPoint

Webinar Video


Link: Research on Elder Abuse Among American Indian and Alaska Native Populations

Topics: Diversity/Cultural Competency, Overview/General, Prevention/Intervention

Access: Download, Web-based

Intended Use: Self-directed Learning, Teaching Others

Audience: Advocates, Caregivers, Social Services

Level: Advanced, Intermediate