Mission and History

The mission of the Minnesota Elder Justice Center is to mobilize communities to prevent and alleviate abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation of elder and vulnerable adults.

Our four immediate areas of focus are:

  • Public awareness
  • Professional education and practice
  • Public policy
  • Direct Service

The Minnesota Elder Justice Center incorporated in February 2014 and launched October 1, 2014. The Minnesota Elder Justice Center joins two highly-regarded Minnesota initiatives to focus and accelerate work to prevent and alleviate the abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation of elders and vulnerable adults – the Vulnerable Adult Justice Project (VAJP) and MN S.A.F.E. Elders Initiative.

Vulnerable Adult Justice Project (now called Center Partners) was founded in 2007 as a unique, statewide, interdisciplinary collaborative working to protect vulnerable and older adults as a multi-disciplinary working group. The participants of the Center Partners now represent over 50 organizations and are broad and vary in their disciplines – prosecution, adult protection, domestic/sexual violence programs, medical and educational institutions, Dept. of Human Services and Dept. of Public Safety employees, criminal justice advocates, and more.

The Minnesota S.A.F.E. Elders Initiative was born out of conversations between the Anoka County Attorney’s Office and leaders from the former Vulnerable Adult Justice Project in 2012 to increase knowledge of elder abuse by the production of a Minnesota-focused educational toolkit and video. This group of professionals, including prosecutors, educators, law enforcement, experts on aging, financial advisors, and the medical community developed a toolkit for use throughout Minnesota to spot and reduce elder abuse. Central to the toolkit Elder Victims: Abused, Exploited, Alone, a 26 minute documentary created in partnership with Twin Cities Public Television. The group also launched a mobile app for law enforcement, a trial notebook for prosecutors, and a website with Minnesota-specific resources, presentations, fact sheets, and community toolkits to help spot and prevent elder abuse.

In 2013, the decision was made to join forces and merge into a nonprofit organization – The Minnesota Elder Justice Center.