Elder and Vulnerable Adult Services Team (EVAST)

Hand of an elder being held by a younger person's handsThe Humboldt County District Attorney's Office and Adult Protective Services (APS) created the Elder and Vulnerable Adult Services Team (EVAST) to collaboratively address cases of elder and vulnerable adult abuse by using a comprehensive approach to remove barriers and improve systematic response.

The goals of EVAST are to:

  • Ensure the safety and wellbeing of elders/vulnerable adults in our community;
  • Conduct joint investigations of elder/vulnerable adult abuse and neglect cases;
  • Address increasing incidents of financial abuse in Humboldt County;
  • Enhance the prosecution of abuse cases; and
  • Provide greater services, support, and access to resources for those who are at risk of, or have been subject to, elder or vulnerable adult abuse and neglect.

EVAST utilizes a Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) approach  while aiming to increase the safety of elders and vulnerable adults in our community. The team consists of an APS Program Coordinator, Social Workers, Public Health Nurses, District Attorney Investigator and Deputy District Attorney. Members work closely with community partners and stakeholders including Law Enforcement Agencies, Tribal partners, the Public Guardian, Mental Health Crisis Services, Older Adult Mental Health, and Healthcare Agencies. The team participates in interdisciplinary training and networking opportunities to ensure EVAST services, prevention and treatment methods will meet the needs of vulnerable populations in the county.

The National Counsel on Aging states that up to five million Americans are abused every year, and the annual loss by victims of financial abuse is estimated to be at least $36.5 billion.

Abuse includes physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, exploitation, neglect, and abandonment. Perpetrators can include children, other family members, and spouses - as well as staff at nursing homes, assisted living, and other community facilities.

  • Physical Abuse: Inflicting physical pain or injury.
  • Sexual Abuse: Touching, fondling, intercourse, or any other sexual activity with an adult who is unable to understand, unwilling to consent, or is threatened or physically forced.
  • Emotional Abuse: Verbal assaults, threats of abuse, harassment, or intimidation.
  • Confinement: Physical or chemically restraining or isolating.
  • Passive Neglect: Caregiver's failure to provide the adult with life's necessities, including, but not limited to: food, clothing, shelter, or medical care.
  • Willful Deprivation: Denying the adult medication, medical care, shelter, family or friends, food, a therapeutic device, or other physical assistance, and exposing that person to the risk of physical, mental, or emotional harm.
  • Financial Exploitation: The misuse or withholding of resources by another.

To find out more about Adult Protective Services and how to report abuse, please visit their website HERE.

If you or someone you know may be a victim of adult abuse, please contact Humboldt County Adult Protective Services at 707-476-2100. If the issue is emergent or life-threatening, please call 911.