Dementia Australia welcomes action to prevent elder abuse

Friday 15 June 2018

Dementia Australia has welcomed the Federal Government’s establishment of Elder Abuse Action Australia to help protect the rights of older Australians.

Speaking on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said that elder abuse in Australia is a serious issue that directly impacts the wellbeing of older Australians, especially those who are living with dementia.

“Based on international indicators, it is estimated that between 2 per cent and 10 per cent of older Australians experience elder abuse in any given year, with the prevalence of neglect possibly higher[1],” Ms McCabe said.

“People living with dementia and other forms of cognitive impairment have a heightened risk of abuse as they may find it difficult to comprehend, recall, or report their abuse. Even if reported, these reports may sometimes be dismissed as being unreliable.  

“Improved levels of training, education and support for people working with or caring for someone living with dementia is needed to minimise the risk of abuse.

“Dementia Australia welcomes the establishment of Elder Abuse Action Australia and their commitment to promote the safety, dignity, equality, health and independence of older Australians through education, capacity building, data gathering and research.”

Dementia Australia provides a range of education and services to help people working with or caring for people living with dementia, to enhance the quality of life of the person living with dementia and reduce the potential for abuse. For more information please contact the National Dementia Helpline on 1800 100 500.

For information, support and referrals please contact:

  • Elder Abuse Helpline (QLD) 1300 651 192
     
  • Elder Abuse Helpline & Resource Unit (NSW) 1800 628 221
     
  • Senior Rights Victoria (VIC) 1300 368 821
     
  • Elder Abuse Helpline (WA) 1300 724 679
     
  • Elder Abuse Phone line (SA) 1800 372 310
     
  • Older Person Abuse Prevention Referral & Information Line ACT (02) 6205 3535
     
  • Tasmanian Elder Abuse Helpline (TAS) 1800 44 11 69
     
  • Elder Abuse Information Line (NT) 1800 037 072
     
  • Lifeline 13 11 14

-Ends-

Dementia Australia is the national peak body and charity for people, of all ages, living with all forms of dementia, their families and carers. It provides advocacy, support services, education and information. An estimated 425,000 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than 1.1 million by 2056. Dementia Australia is the new voice of Alzheimer’s Australia. Dementia Australia’s services are supported by the Australian Government.


National Dementia Helpline 1800 100 500
Interpreter service available

(The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)
Dementia is a National Health Priority Area


Media contacts: Anna Townend Media and Communications Manager 0435 532 214


[1] Kaspiew R, Carson R, Rhoades H (February 2016). Elder abuse: Understanding issues, frameworks, and responses. Research report No 35, Chapter 3. https://aifs.gov.au/publications/elder-abuse