Essex County TRIAD Director
(978) 750-1900 ext. 3404
Topsfield Fair 2005
Assistant Superintendent Jason Ebacher with members of the Salisbury, Newburyport and Topsfield Triads.
1. What is a TRIAD?
A TRIAD is a partnership which involves Senior Citizens, Law Enforcement Agencies (Sheriff / Police / District Attorney) and Support / Protective Services (Councils on Aging / Elder Services / Clergy, etc.) who agree to work together. Their primary goals are to reduce the criminal victimization of older citizens and enhance the delivery of services to this population. TRIAD provides the opportunity for an exchange of information between law enforcement, support services and senior citizens. It focuses on reducing unwarranted fear of crime and improving the quality of life for seniors. A TRIAD is tailored to meet the needs of each community and is guided by a S. A. L. T. Council (Senior and Law Enforcement Together). TRIAD can be an integral part of community policing.
2. Why is TRIAD Necessary?
Older Americans comprise the most rapidly growing segment of the population. One in every eight Americans is already age 65 or older, a total of more than 33.6 million. Increased life expectancy is leading to new issues and problems for the criminal justice system as most communities experience a dramatic increase in the number of older persons. Calls for services, crimes, victims are all changing.
3. How Did TRIAD Get Started?
The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), and the National Sheriffs' Association (NSA) signed a cooperative agreement in 1988 to work together to reduce both criminal victimization and unwarranted fear of crime affecting older persons. The three national organizations agreed that Police Chiefs, Sheriffs, and Senior Citizens, working together could devise a better ways to reduce crimes against the elderly and enhance law enforcements services to older citizens. This, they believe, is true community policing, providing better service to a population, which appreciates, respects and supports law enforcement.
4. Who Carries Out TRIAD Activities?
The engine that drives TRIAD is the S. A. L. T. Council (Seniors and Law Enforcement Together). S. A. L. T. Councils typically include representatives of the Sheriff Department, local Police Departments, District Attorney Office, Council on Aging, Elder Services, Clergy, Senior Citizens and other agencies interested in helping the elderly community. Within the S. A. L. T. Council the members combine their talents to create and implement programs tailored to the needs of their senior community. The S. A. L. T. Council determines the needs and concerns of their elderly community and collaboratively develops ways in which to meet those needs. The S. A. L. T. Council is the governing body of a local TRIAD program.
5. What Can TRIAD Do?
A TRIAD assesses the needs of its community. Areas with serious crime problems may focus initially in the areas of crime prevention and victim assistance. Where older persons are not often targets of crime, the S. A. L. T. Council may decide to concentrate on reassurance programs, training for law enforcement and involving volunteers within the law enforcement agencies. The S. A. L. T. Council plans actives and programs to involve and benefit both law enforcement and seniors. TRIAD sponsored actives can include but are not limited to:
- How to avoid criminal victimization
- Increased involvement in Neighborhood Watch
- Home security information and inspections
- Timely information of current frauds and scams
- How to cope with telephone solicitations and door to door salesmen
- Elder abuse prevention, recognition and reporting
- Training for law enforcement in communicating with and assisting older persons
- Adopt-a-senior visits for shut-ins
- Intergenerational projects beneficial to seniors and youth
- Emergency preparedness plans by and for seniors
- Victim assistance by and for seniors
- Safe shopping days
- File for Life (Emergency medical information cards)
- Mature volunteers within law enforcement agencies
- Speakers bureau available to the community
- "Is your number up" (House Numbering)
6. TRIAD Action Plan
I. Chief of Police, Sheriff and District Attorney meet to discuss:
A. Crimes against seniors
B. Possible areas of TRIAD involvement in the community
C. Composition of S. A. L. T. Council
D. Selection of S. A. L. T. Council chairman
II. S. A. L. T. Council is chosen:
A. Topics for discussion for S. A. L. T. Council;
1. Number of seniors in the community
2. Crimes against seniors in the community
3. Problems faced by seniors in the community
4. Fears of seniors in the community
B. Develop methods for surveying senior population
C. Discuss current programs available
D. Identify unmet needs
III. Develop subcommittees to plan and implement S. A. L. T. Councils plans.
A. Evaluate activities and success
B. Increase volunteer leadership and responsibilities increase.
Sheriff Cousins and District Attorney Blodgett with members of Haverhill's Triad.