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Elder Abuse

15 June 2017

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2017

The CUH in conjunction with the Social Work Department in CUH is marking World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2017.  

The day aims to focus global attention on the problem of physical, emotional, and financial abuse of elders. It also seeks to understand the challenges and opportunities presented by an ageing population, and brings together senior citizens, and their caregivers, national and local government, academics, and the private sector to exchange ideas about how best to reduce incidents of violence towards elders, increase reporting of such abuse, and to develop elder friendly policies.

While the taboo topic of elder abuse has started to gain visibility across the world, it remains one of the least investigated types of violence in national surveys, and one of the least addressed in national action plans.

Although this topic is a particularly painful subject to think about, and  whilst we do not want to believe that older people are being mistreated in any way. The lived reality for some senior citizens  is a heartbreaking story.

Older people have the right to a life of dignity in old age, free of all forms of abuse, including financial and material exploitation, which could lead to poverty, hunger, homelessness, compromised health and well-being, and even premature mortality.

Most older people do not experience abuse. But, unfortunately, in Ireland today, and many other places around the world, our elders are not accorded the respect that they deserve, and live a life of fear and abuse.

There are ways in which an older person can be harmed or abused by others. An older person may also experience more than one form of abuse at any given time.


Elder abuse is defined as -

''A single or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust which causes harm or distress to an older person or violates their human and civil rights.'' (Protecting our Future, Report of the Working Group on Elder Abuse, September 2002)

If you are a victim of Elder Abuse, are concerned about abuse, or if you suspect someone you know may be a victim of abuse, you should contact your nearest Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults Team on 021 4923967, speak to your GP, Public Health Nurse, local Health Centre or An Garda Siochana. Or please do feel free to contact our Social Work Department here in the hospital on 021 4922488.


There is no excuse for elder abuse!!!