TYLER, Texas (KETK)- The Smith County Adult Protective Services Board got the community together for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on Wednesday.

Carrie Blackwell, the president of the Smith County Adult Protective Services Board, said she encouraged nursing homes, healthcare facilities and other Tyler businesses to tie purple ribbons near their buildings to bring attention to this issue. The Heights of Tyler nursing home was one of the places that participated.

“Elder abuse is not just physical. It’s mental. It’s financial exploitation. It’s neglect as well (and) lack of food,” said Blackwell.

She also said some people may know about adult protective services, but the APS board keeps track of how many elder abuse cases there are.

“We get an average number by month, and usually, it’s averaging about 85 cases reported a month here in just Smith county,” said Blackwell.

Not all cases may be reported because of fear or other situations.

The APS board is made up of volunteers, and they also work with state representatives.

The group holds events and fundraisers to support the elderly community incase anyone needs food or other items like blankets or fans.

The phone number for the Texas Abuse Hotline is 1-800-252-5400. People can also click here for more information.