Palliative Care NSW Volunteer Support Services Programme
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Highlighting Elder Abuse in February

Volunteers in palliative care may see elderly people in vulnerable circumstances and may unwittingly witness circumstances that constitute abuse for that person.

This month the Senior Rights Service is holding their 5th National Elder Abuse conference in Sydney on 19-20 February. Conference organisers say:

“Elder abuse in Australian society is increasingly gaining mainstream attention. It is a social issue that we now hear and read about in the media on an almost weekly basis. While we still have no reliable prevalence data in Australia to inform our work, we know that the communities and services we represent have growing demands to provide an adequate response to elder abuse”.

“The conference is taking place after a significant 18 months in Australia’s response to elder abuse. In 2017, the Australian Law Reform Commission handed down its report and recommendations on elder abuse after a rigorous and wide ranging national inquiry. Also last year, a number of high profile stories of neglect and abuse within our aged-care services led to two major inquiries focused on aged-care service delivery. And back in 2016, the NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into Elder Abuse tabled its report and recommendations to the state parliament”.

You might not be able to make it along to the Together Making Change conference but the Senior Rights Service has a number of resources available on abuse and other topics of relevance. These are available for download.

“Stigma and shame still create barriers and – on the whole – elder abuse remains a silent epidemic in our society. We need to work together to challenge these barriers and shine a spotlight on the issue”.

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