Protective Services for Adults (PSA) is a system of services provided without regard to income under the New York State Office of Children and Family Services for persons 18 or older, who, because of a mental and/or physical impairment, are at risk of harm or are unable to meet their own needs and have no one to assist them responsibly. In New York State, local social services departments have the primary responsibility to provide services to impaired adults who may be abused, neglected or exploited and are living in the community.
Protective Services for Adults relies heavily on the resources and services of the community, such as health and mental health services, programs for the aging population, law enforcement, legal agencies and the courts. PSA can provide services directly or arrange for help from community agencies to reduce the risk a person faces. PSA cannot usually provide services to a client who refuses them since adults have a right to make their own decision. However, if a person is at risk and unable to understand the potential harm and consequences, PSA will intervene. A mental health assessment and court intervention are usually required for involuntary services.
Referrals from professionals, community agencies or other concerned persons are essential to assure those vulnerable adults are protected. Abused or neglected adults are often reluctant to seek help for themselves. Unless others call, they will remain at risk. Social Services Law provides immunity from civil liability to persons who, in good faith, make a referral concerning an adult who they believe may need protective services.
Who Should I Call?
Call your local Department of Social Services, Protective Services for Adults Intake Line at (914) 995-2259 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. Evenings (after 4:30 PM), weekends and holidays, call Emergency Services at (914) 995-2099.
In a medical emergency, always call 911.