Elder abuse is tragedy that affects hundreds of thousands of seniors regardless of race, gender, or socioeconomic class. Even though one in ten seniors has been subjected to financial, physical, or emotional abuse, elder abuse is still an under recognized problem.
With attention, education, training, and proper reporting, elder abuse can be significantly reduced. As an extension of ALFA’s public awareness initiatives and commitment to eradicating elder abuse, ALFA encourages senior living communities and members of the general public to participate in World Elder Abuse Awareness Day each year on June 15th.
2013 World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
In 2013, ALFA observed World Elder Abuse Awareness Day throughout the month of June. ALFA championed a variety of initiatives including the following.
Free Webinar On Elder Abuse Prevention & DetectionThe safety and security of its residents is always a senior living provider’s number one concern. Through this complimentary webinar, senior living professionals learned strategies for elder abuse prevention, detection, and reporting and explored methods for strengthening their efforts through effective collaboration with state ombudsman programs. A recording of the webinar, Protecting Our Residents: Establishing Partnerships For Effective Elder Abuse Prevention & Detection, is available at alfa.org/elderabusewebinar.
Older Is Wiser CampaignAgeism is a destructive precursor to elder abuse. By devaluing and marginalizing older adults, ageism robs seniors of their independence, dignity, and quality of life. Throughout June, ALFA focused on rethinking the way society views older adults. ALFA encouraged Facebook and Twitter users to take the ALFA Pledge To Seniors, which champions a fresh perspective of aging that supports the many talents of seniors. Social media users also posted pictures of themselves holding “older is wiser” signs or other signs sharing how they define older, and senior living communities hosted special events honoring senior living residents’ skills, talents, and accomplishments.
Volunteering With Isolated SeniorsAs a way of giving back and drawing attention to elder abuse risk factors, ALFA staff spent a day volunteering with a local Meals on Wheels program. Meals on Wheels plays an important role in alleviating the social isolation, which is a profound risk factor for elder abuse.
Sharing Facts About Elder AbuseRaising awareness is an effective way to combat elder abuse. ALFA tweeted facts about elder abuse throughout June 15th to educate and inspire its twitter followers.
Additional Ways To Help
To help communities raise awareness and fight elder abuse year round, ALFA has provided the resources below. Together we can end elder abuse.
Assistant Director of Government Affairs