Department of Family Services - Older Adults

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

TTY 711

12011 Government Center Parkway, Suite 708
Fairfax, VA 22035

Trina Mayhan-Webb,
Division Director

Fairfax Area Commission on Aging Meeting Minutes - November 2018


Wednesday, November 28, 2018 — 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
Hunter Mill District Office
1801 Cameron Glen Drive, Community Room A
Reston, VA 20190


Commissioners Present
Carolyn Sutterfield (Chair), Mike Perel (Vice Chair), Tom Bash, Sharron Dreyer, Joe Heastie, Kathy Hoyt, Kay Larmer, Gwendolyn Minton, Cathy Muha

Commissioners Absent
Cathy Cole, Diane Watson

Staff Present
Trina Mayhan-Webb, Jacquie Woodruff, Fatmata Mustapha

Others Present
Blanca Calvi, Virginia Hospital Center; Captain Thea Pirnat, Fairfax County Police Department; Second Lieutenant Richard Cash, Fairfax County Police Department; Samantha Renner, Fairfax County Adult Protective Services; Tavna Limage, Fairfax County Adult Protective Services; Lori Jones, Fairfax County Adult and Aging Division; Patricia Rohrer, Fairfax County Health Department; Paul Wexler, ServiceSource Inc.; Trudy Marotta, AARP

Call to Order; Introductions; Additions to Agenda; Approval of the Agenda; Approval of the Minutes
Chair Carolyn Sutterfield called the meeting to order at 10:05 a.m. Trina asked for clarification on the website follow‑up requests. Feedback is possible for each section of the website. Sharron motioned that the agenda be approved. Mike seconded. Kay motioned that the minutes be approved. Mike seconded.

Carolyn introduced Gwendolyn Minton, the newly-appointed Hunter Mill Commissioner. Gwendolyn has a background in housing, sales and marketing, analysis, and research. She is excited about serving on the COA and is passionate about several 50+ Community Action Plan initiatives.

Public Comment
No public comment.

Presentation: Elder and Vulnerable Adult Shield Unit – Fairfax County Police Department, Captain Thea Pirnat and Second Lieutenant Richard Cash; Adult Protective Services Supervisors Samantha Renner and Tavna Limage; Adult & Aging Paralegal Lori Jones
Captain Thea Pirnat and Second Lieutenant Richard Cash distributed information about the Elder and Vulnerable Adult Shield Unit. By 2030, it is expected that nearly 1 in 5 Virginians will be over age 65. Vulnerable adults are being targeted. Scams include romance, grandparent, telemarketing, IRS, and woodchuck. The percentage of Adult Protective Services (APS) substantiated reports is trending upward, with increases in self-neglect, neglect, financial exploitation, and physical abuse. In July 2017, Code of Virginia § 63.2-1605 Protective Services for Adults by Local Departments, was amended requiring APS to refer all cases of suspected financial exploitation of a senior or incapacitated adult to law enforcement for investigation. Prior to this modification, only cases where the suspected exploitation was over $50,000 were automatically referred to law enforcement.

Financial crimes with victims 60 and older have trended upward from 2010 to 2015-17 average, including the following:

  • Embezzlement – 20.8% increase
  • Extortion/blackmail – 133.3% increase
  • Fraud – False Pretenses/Swindle – 285.3% increase
  • Fraud – Impersonation – 72.1% increase
  • Fraud – Wire Fraud – 66.7% increase

The Financial Crimes Squad received 66 APS referrals from July through December 2017. The number in 2018 from January through June increased to 88 APS referrals, an increase of 35% in a six-month period. By August 28, 2018, the Financial Crimes Squad had received 126 APS referrals.

Benchmarking demonstrates that other jurisdictions with similar populations have dedicated elder abuse squads, including several jurisdictions with fewer sworn officers.

Tavna Limage and Samantha Renner distributed information about Adult Protective Services (APS). APS provides mandated investigations of situations of suspected abuse, neglect (includes self-neglect), or exploitation involving older adults age 60+ and incapacitated adults age 18+. Investigations are conducted in private homes, group homes, day programs, nursing facilities, assisted living, facilities, and hospitals. Services are provided to those who are at risk. In Fiscal Year 2018, 1,221 investigations were conducted, and 818 individuals were in need of protective services. The number of investigations and of people who need protective services have been trending upward every year for the past five years.

Lori Jones thanked Joe Heastie for his service on the Pre-Guardianship Panel. The Pre-Guardianship Panel is composed of an attorney, a Commission on Aging representative, and a representative from the Community Services Board. The panel meets monthly to provide an objective assessment about cases that are being considered by APS as needing guardians/conservators.

Fairfax County currently has APS units in Annandale, South County, and Fairfax. In 2017, a position to specialize in financial exploitation was created. In September 2018, the Board of Supervisors approved three new APS positions.

To support the Silver Shield Campaign and Financial Exploitation Task Force, APS leads a monthly gathering of local and federal partners who meet to problem-solve current financial exploitation situations. Adult and Aging Communications is a partner in the publicity campaign to inform and prevent financial exploitation. The Silver Shield Campaign recently won a NACO award.

The Financial Crimes Squad would like 15 positions dedicated to the Elder and Vulnerable Adult Shield Unit. Some of these positions might be new positions. Carolyn and Kay stated that the COA would be willing to testify to support positions.

Mike asked for insights on preventing exploitation of victims with dementia. The police and APS recommend educating the public, including banks, and enforcement messaging to offenders. Mike recommended the short documentary, Edith and Eddie, regarding a case in Alexandria.

APS referrals can be made through the Aging, Disability, and Caregiver Resources Intake Line: 703-324-7948, TTY 711.

Old Business
A contract should be signed soon for a vendor to conduct a survey to be mailed to a representative sample of older adult residents in Fairfax County and the Cities of Fairfax and Falls Church. The survey will allow for benchmarking with jurisdictions across the country. Carolyn stated that focus groups will be held after the survey.

At the request of Carolyn and Tom, Patricia Rohrer and Tanya Disselkoen researched the Senior Reach Program, a proposed 50+ initiative. Tanya spoke with the founder of Senior Reach and eight of the thirteen Senior Reach program managers nationwide. Although Senior Reach provides an evidence-based approach to behavioral health support, the program doesn't appear to be a match for Fairfax County at this time.

Kay reported that GrandInvolve, though not the selected winner, was one of six shortlisted for an FCPS award. Senior Reach now has volunteers in all Title 1 schools in Mount Vernon and is moving into Lee District. Donations can be made on the GrandInvolve webpage.

Carolyn, Diane, and Jacquie attended the Partnership for a Healthier Fairfax's CHIP (Community Health Improvement Plan) community meeting. Carolyn and Diane will serve on the Behavioral Health Committee. Jacquie serves on the Healthy Environment and Active Living Committee. Cathy Muha and AAA Dietitian and Congregate Meals Manager Maria Loh serve on the Healthy Eating Committee. Cathy reported that she and Maria are exploring working with Western Fairfax Christian Ministries to grow herbs with older adults in Sully in a pilot to address food insecurity.

Carolyn attended the LTCCC general meeting for a presentation about the CSB's Older Adults Mental Health First Aid. Volunteer Solutions also partnered with the CSB to offer this training. Information and training dates are available on CSB's webpage at

Sharron and Tom are serving on the Affordable Housing Resources Panel, Communitywide Housing Strategic Plan, Phase II. The committee is reviewing affordability across incomes and populations.

Kay stated that the McLean Village is developing a discount card to be used with local businesses.

On behalf of the COA, Mike chaired the NVAN meeting on November 20. The five local COAs rotate chairing NVAN meetings. Fairfax County Kinship Family Institute Coordinator Nancy Coffey presented at the meeting.

The COA reviewed the drafts-in-progress of the COA Liaison List and the COA Calendar. Commissioners can review meeting agendas to determine which meetings might be relevant to the COA.

Tom proposed that commissioners report by topic area, rather than by liaison role. He distributed a list of suggested topic areas. Tom stated that commissioners may not agree with all items on the NVAN legislative platform. NVAN is comprised of COAs from all five Northern Virginia AAAs. Although commissioners serve as aging advocates, individual commissioners aren't required to advocate on specific NVAN platform items.

Trina stated that the current magnetic COA name tags are labeled unsafe for people using pacemakers. The COA will receive new name tags. Fatmata distributed clip (Option 1) and lanyard (Option 2) nametag options for COA consideration. The COA will vote on the nametag to be used by the COA.

Mike will draft a COA grip card for COA input at the December meeting.

Director's Report
At the request of Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan, the Virginia Insurance Counseling and Assistance Program (VICAP) planned and hosted a Medicare 101 event on November 26. Mari de Leon and Koester Helfer, with assistance from AAA staff, executed the event that was attended by many, including Mary Lazare (Principal Deputy Administrator of Administration for Community Living) and Demetrios Kouzoukas (Center for Medicare Principal Deputy Administrator). Fifty individuals received counseling for open enrolment, and five residents saved over $90,000.

With some additional DARS funding, the AAA will purchase two new wheelchairs for each of the Fairfax County government buildings.

The Nutrition team has partnered with the Office for Emergency Management to distribute emergency kits to all Meals on Wheels clients.

New Business
Kay and Carolyn drafted the letter, submitted on behalf of the COA, in support of Fairfax County's Human Services Transportation application to the Federal Transit Administration's Access and Mobility Partnership Grant. Kay stated that Mobility Manager Cynthia Alarico did an outstanding job with the grant application process. The grant would support non-emergency medical transportation, a 50+ initiative.

Mike directed the COA to the Consolidated Community Funding Pool (CCFP) Community Feedback Survey available online. The six topics covered are broader than older adults, but include relevant issues. The survey completion deadline is December 15 ( Tom is now on the Consolidated Community Funding Advisory Committee (CCFAC).

Bylaws will be reviewed at the December meeting.

November is Virginia Family Caregivers Month (

Mike announced that the Northern Virginia Positive Aging and Wellness Fair will be held on April 11, 2019.

Carolyn and Kay attended the grand opening of The Fallstead at Lewinsville on October 18. Kay stated that the project is amazing and that the affordable residences for older adults are beautiful.

Kathy Hoyt motioned that the meeting be adjourned. Joe seconded. The meeting was adjourned at 12:01 p.m.

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