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Elder abuse - we must do better

Dr Lynda Scott National Health Spokesperson

10 September 2002

Elder abuse - we must do better

A case involving an elderly Blenheim man being ripped off by an Age Concern field officer proves that not enough is being done to stop elder abuse in this country, says National's Health spokesperson Dr Lynda Scott.

"I want to know how someone working for a known agency was able to steal more than $32,000 from a man he was supposedly caring for. This is just the tip of the iceberg, as every day we hear of yet another case of some elderly person being abused.

"Many cases of violence against the elderly go unreported and swift action is needed to make sure we are taking better care of our elderly. No one is monitoring the situation.

"National set up 22 elder abuse prevention services. In the three years that this Government has been in, there has been no increase in services, no increase in funding and no monitoring of the services provided.

"It is an insult to the elderly that the only response today from the Minister for Senior Citizens, Lianne Dalziel, is to seek yet another report and create yet another committee while people continue to be ripped off and abused in their own homes.

"Labour's 'do nothing' attitude is appalling and obviously it doesn't care. I do and National will not let this serious issue rest," says Dr Scott.


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