COTA Australia welcomes the official launch of the Elder Abuse Action Australia initiative by Commonwealth Attorney-General Hon Christian Porter MP at Seniors Rights Service in Sydney this morning.
Elder Abuse Action Australia (EAAA) is a growing network of organisations and individuals that work in elder abuse prevention and support services around Australia.
The launch, hosted by Seniors Rights Service, heard from Russell Westacott, CEO of Seniors Rights Service NSW, Jenny Blakey, Director of Seniors Rights, Victoria and Scott McDougall, Director and Principal Solicitor of Caxton Legal Centre, Brisbane.
Chief Executive of COTA Australia, Ian Yates, said the official launch of EAAA this morning was a crucial step in addressing the growing incidence of elder abuse amongst older Australians.
“Older Australians are among those most vulnerable to physical, emotional and financial abuse, and more often that not incidences of abuse go unnoticed.
“Elder abuse is a manifestation of ageism and a sign of a much broader complex societal problem in our attitudes towards older Australians.
“Elder abuse is an epidemic gripping our nation and we are delighted to see politicians, industry bodies and advocacy groups working together to develop a meaningful social response to tackle elder abuse.
“COTA Australia welcomes the Federal Government’s allocation of $500,000 towards the establishment of the EAAA to protect the rights of older Australians and a further $50,000 in sponsorship for the 6th elder abuse conference in July next year,” said Mr Yates.
The launch of EAAA coincides with World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (Friday June 15), which aims to raise global awareness of the physical, emotional and financial abuse experienced by older people.
“Over the last decade we have seen coordinated whole-of-sector responses to the issues of domestic violence and child abuse – it’s time now for our nation to take similar action to address elder abuse. All older Australians should be afforded the fundamental human right to live free from violence, neglect and abuse.
“Australia needs to put much greater effort into the prevention of elder abuse and we look forward to working closely with the Attorney-General, industry bodies and advocacy groups on an ongoing basis to create meaningful outcomes for all older Australians,” said Mr Yates.
Media contact: Ian Yates 0418 835 439, Bronte Kerr 0411 676 269