Elder abuse is generally 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. It also happens in Institutional (say, old age home or Nursing
Home) and Domestic setup. Elderly parents and grand parents may be
ill treated by children grand children or care givers.
Elder abuse may take several forms:
1. Physical abuse
2. Sexual abuse
3. Emotional or psychological abuse
4. Financial or material exploitation
Throughout the world, abuse and neglect of older adults largely
remains under-recognized, or treated as an unspoken problem. No
community or country in the world is immune from this social problem.
Abuse and neglect of older adults is a complex and multi-faceted
problem. Elder abuse encompasses many different types of harms and can
occur in community or institutional settings. Raising awareness of
elder abuse is a challenge. The issue requires complex, multiple and
integrated responses from a very wide range of sources at individual,
institutional, societal and global levels.
Many nations in the world observe 15th June every year as World Elder
Abuse Awareness Day. This year this is sixth year in succession. Some
leading organizations like Silver Innings Foundation, Mumbai (SIF);
Federation of Senior Citizens Oeganizations of Maharashtra (FESCOM);
Harmony Silvers Foundation, Mumbai; Society for Serving Seniors (SSS)
are joining together under INPEA – International Network for
Prevention of Elder Abuse to carry out a series of activities
promoting awareness among public, media and the government.
What are the specific activities that any SCA may take up on June 15th?
1. On June 15th 2011 request senior citizens and members of public to
gather at a central place. Let all of them wear Violet Ribbon on left
arm to denote Elder Abuse Awareness Day
2. They may hold placards with slogans asking for eliminating Elder Abuse
3. They may hold talks and lectures by important people
4. Simple pamphlets explaining What is Elder Abuse and how to handle
it in local languages may be distributed
5. Talks to school children will be useful.
6. Request press and media to publish case studies of local elder
7. Simple questionnaire to get views of public on creating awareness
and getting their views
8. Talk to a few victims of Elder Abuse in your area and see what can
be done to mitigate the problem distributed and data analysed
9. Tell people how Maintenance and Protection of Parents and Senior
Citizens Act is useful in cases of Elder Abuse
Essay Competition may be held among school / college children, members
of senior citizens associations, bloggers etc Some topics are
How to avoid Elder Abuse – Tips for Senior Citizens
Why should EA be shunned?
What are various type of Elder abuse?
Narrate a few case studies of Elder Abuse known to you.
How does ageism contribute to EA?
What are the underlying reasons for EA from Abusers and Victims points of view?
What should government do to lessen Elder Abuse?
What can civil societies do in Elder Abuse?
How can school children be sensitized?
Give some Tips to EA victims to cope up with the issue
Persons when they assemble in a central place may display banners
placards or posters.
Some suggested text for slogans for this activity are given below:
Abusers of Elders are ungrateful persons: Expose them
Elder Abuse is a Sin: Don't be a irredeemable sinner
Avoid Elder Abuse: Bring culprits to book
Advise Abusers to avoid neglecting Elders
An Elder Abuser is an uncivilized person and a brute: Treat them as outcastes
Civilized societies have zero tolerance for Elder Abuse.
Indian tradition respects Elders: Help continue this tradition
Avoid, Abhor and annihilate Elder Abuse
Re-pay your debt to Elders: Avoid Elder Abuse
Elder abusers will be abused in later years: History will repeat surely.
Forceful transfer of property of senior citizens is illegal; this can
be reversed as null & void
Penalty for abandonment of Elders is three months in Jail
Abandon your parents and stay in Jail for three months
You are bound by law to take care of your parents financially if they are poor
Let us hope there will be lot of activity on June 15th making people
aware of the burning problem of Elder Abuse.