Bid to stop elder abuse
ABOUT one in 20 elderly people are victims of abuse, but leading organisation for seniors Advocare will not let that statistic become the norm.
ABOUT one in 20 elderly people are victims of abuse, but WA’s leading organisation for seniors refuses to let that statistic become the norm.
Advocare identifies six major forms of common abuse among the growing population of elderly: financial, psychological, social, physical, sexual and neglect.
Shockingly, the majority of elder abuse is at the hands of adult children.
The Elder Abuse Helpline was launched in 2014 and currently only takes about 40 calls a month.
Advocare chief executive Greg Mahney said the first step to reducing elderly abuse was to increase awareness among the population and encourage more victims to come forward.
“Advocare is extremely active in the community, providing education and support services across metropolitan Perth and regional WA,” he said.
He said Advocare recog- nised many people were afraid to speak out for fear of damaging relationships but the Helpline provided strategies and options to combat this.
In a bid to improve care and quality of service, the or- ganisation moved into new premises in Victoria Park last week alongside Visablity and Guide Dogs WA.
Minister for Seniors Tony Simpson officially opened the new building and said the government’s vision for the future of seniors was closely aligned with Advocare.
“By 2021 we’ll have over 600,000 people in WA over the age of 60, so the vision is to really help them along – with Advocare – so they have the quality care they deserve,” he said.
“Elderly abuse seems to be happening to an increasing number of people and it’s obvious a one-size approach to this problem does not fit all.”
Speakers at the launch identified the need to help people on a more personal, unique level to address any community members falling through the cracks.
Visability chief executive Clare Allen said the new location was perfect for Advocare because both organisations had similar ideals on helping victims from the grassroots.
If you need help contact the Elder Abuse Helpline on 1300 724 679.
Advocare chief executive Greg Mahney, Monique Withers with Isla and Minister for Seniors Tony Simpson.