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Did you know?
- Research suggests that as many as 50,000 older people in NSW may have experienced some form of abuse
- It is estimated that only one in five cases of elder abuse is reported
- The majority of alleged abusers are trusted family members, neighbours, friends or paid carers
The abuse of older people is a globally recognised issue that is becoming more prevalent. The increasing ageing population and increasing demand for family caregiving will likely contribute to a rise in all forms of elder abuse in the coming years.
The causes of abuse are complex and may involve physical, social, medical, legal and environmental factors. There are also many barriers that may prevent the older person reporting abuse or asking for help. It often begins with awareness of what constitutes abuse and the older person understanding their rights in the situation.
The United Nation's Principles for Older Persons recognises the older person's fundamental right to Independence, Participation, Care, Self-fulfillment and Dignity.
It's important to know older people have the right to enjoy a life free from abuse. An older person's dignity should be both honoured and respected. Individual beliefs, needs, the right to privacy to make decisions about their care, and the quality of their life are rights all older people should expect and deserve.