Canastota pastor speaks out against elder abuse
CANASTOTA, N.Y. >> Thomas Burgess, the pastor of Hope Christian Fellowship in Canastota and a case supervisor with Onondaga County Adult Protective Services (APS), was recently invited to share on subjects related to the abuse of vulnerable adults.
Burgess was a panelist at the 25th annual New York State Adult Abuse Training Institute, held Sept. 26 and 27 at the Albany Marriott Hotel in Albany where he shared about the newlydeveloped Financial Exploitation Investigation Suite of Tools (FEIST) and Onondaga County’s experience as one of the pilot counties. Also on the panel were: AlanLawitz, Esq., director, Bureau of Adult Services, New York State Office of Children and Family Services; and forensic accountant Karen Webber, CPA, CFE, Webber CPA, LLC.
On Oct. 29, Burgess presented an overview of protective services available for vulnerable adult residents of Onondaga County to 80 care coordinators at a Lunch and Learn held at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Syracuse.
A life-long Central New Yorker, Burgess is a 1971 graduate of Canastota High School. He then attended Syracuse University, where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Speech Communications and Education, and subsequently completed post-graduate work at LeMoyne College to earn certification in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. An educator in elementary, secondary and adult education for over two decades prior to working for Onondaga County, he now frequently presents to various agencies and community groups. He is a past recipient of an Onondaga County Volunteer Award for his work with abused children and youth and a National Adult Protective Services Association Award for his work on elder justice.