Elder Abuse Hits Close To Home For Victims
As we approach World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15th Age Concern Auckland’s CEO, Kevin Lamb is calling for all Aucklanders to take a stand and speak out against elder abuse, which in 4 out of 5 cases is committed by a member of the victim’s family.
Kevin Lamb says, “In 81% of cases that Age Concern Auckland deals with the abuse is happening at the hands of a family member, and in 2 out 3 cases the victim lives with their abuser. The fact that so many of the abusers are family members means that frequently cases of elder abuse aren’t reported because there is a fear with older people that if they speak-out they will lose the only social support network they have. However, Age Concern Auckland can work with older people to retain that relationship if that’s what they want, so older people shouldn’t be afraid to speak up if they are experiencing elder abuse.”
Last year Age Concern Auckland’s Elder Abuse Response Service received 1,511 calls for advice and assistance on elder abuse, and they supported 615 older people with case management to address the abuse and neglect they were experiencing. While Age Concerns across New Zealand received 2500 referrals for elder abuse services for older people.
Kevin Lamb says, “Elder Abuse can be a very sensitive and distressing matter to speak openly about, but we encourage everyone in the community to be aware of the risk factors and speak out if they are experiencing abuse or are concerned that someone they know is. We must work together to protect the older members of our community. You can speak confidentially to one of the Elder Abuse Team at Age Concern Auckland by calling one of our three offices.”
Central & West Auckland – 09 820 0184
Counties Manukau – 09 279 4331
North Shore – 09 489 4975
Elder Abuse Awareness Week runs from 15-22 June 2020. For more information about Age Concern Auckland services and support visit www.ageconcernauckland.org.nz.