POSSIBLE ENVIRONMENTAL INDICATORS OF NEGLECT OF AT-RISK ADULTS *

At-risk adults may have diminshed capacities which affect their ability to  recognize or safely negotiate their environments. The presence of any of the following conditions may be indicative of safety concens warranting further investigation of the individual’s welfare.


  • lack of food or clean water

  • lack of utilities ( electric, heat, running water)

  • feces, urine – (human, animal)

  • overflowing garbage/dirty dishes/ rotting food

  • toilets not in working condition

  • alcohol or other drugs that are unsafely managed

  • falling hazards (stairs, steps, balconies, windows, window wells, construction excavations, etc)

  • presence of sick, injured,  dangerous animals

  • infestation of insects or vermin

  • presence of criminal or gang activity posing a risk to the individual

  • presence of meth lab

  • needles, drug paraphernalia

  • firearms or other weapons that are unsafely managed

  • poisonous household  products  that are unsafely managed

  • fire hazards ( exposed electrical wires/switches, combustible materials close to heat sources, open fireplaces)

  • external locks or locking devices  on bedrooms/ bathrooms

  • unsecured power tools, vehicles, construction or farm equipment

  • abandoned appliances or vehicles

* Thorough investigtion of each individual sitation is required to get an accurate assessment of the environmental hazards present and the individual’s and/or caregiver’s capacity for  managing the identified risks.