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Elder abuse in the spotlight

Elder abuse in the spotlight

By Pam Morton

Aged Persons Voluntary Associations/Pro Bono 


Until recently elder abuse, like family violence, was in the too hard basket. Elder abuse can be defined as any act which causes harm to an older person and is carried out by someone they know and trust. The abuse may be physical, social, financial, psychological or sexual and can include mistreatment and neglect. In Victoria the Royal Commission into Family Violence recognised elder abuse as a form of family violence in that most perpetrators are family members – particularly adult children. Like other forms of family violence, elder abuse involves a person or people disrespecting the rights of another, and abusing their power and control.

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