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For seniors

Abuse of older adults is an abuse of power within relationships of family, trust or dependency. It always involves someone using their power over another person in a way that is hurtful. Abuse of older adults can include neglect, self-neglect and denial of civil and human rights.

Abuse of older adults often involves a family member. Yet anyone - a friend, care giver or any individual in a position of trust and authority can also be abusive toward an older person.

Abuse of older adults can happen in a person's home, other residential settings or in the community.

Abuse of seniors is family violence. Speak up!

Abuse of older adults may . . . .

  • be a continuation of long-term partner abuse

  • begin with retirement

  • begin with the onset of a health condition

  • occur in a new intimate relationship

  • be committed by adult children, grandchildren, or other family members

There may be many reasons why older persons do not report abuse, including:

  • fear of being sent to a nursing home

  • fear of reprisal

  • lack of awareness about what help is available and where to go for help

  • shame of having raised an abusive child

  • fear of not being believed

  • no where to go

  • fear of being denied access to grandchildren

  • fear of being rejected by family

  • intense family loyalty

If you suspect that a senior you know is being abused, speak up! For information on what you can do, read the following resources:

For more information, check out the resources listed at World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

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