A teller (they still use that word!) in North Carolina recently noticed an 89-year-old customer being brought into the branch often by her son, to make withdrawals. The elderly mother started to look worse, and the teller called the police.
They checked her home. She was living in “appalling” conditions, while her son was using the money to support a drug habit. The mother was brought to the hospital, where doctors said she was a couple of days from dying. She has been treated, and her son was arrested.
In the U.S., some states have enacted mandatory reporting laws, while others have voluntary reporting. But, many believe that banks’ own reporting projects have proven most successful in reporting such abuse.
Privacy rules in some jurisdictions, including provinces, can complicate the reporting of this kind of behaviour, but generally, people should be encouraged to report it.
This ad appeared in the Richmond Review on April 18, 2014.