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Elder Abuse. What is it and how can you get help?

Could you be experiencing elder abuse or know someone who might be?

If you suspect an elder abuse case is happening close to you and are not quite sure what you can do about it, then please read on.

The World Health Organisation defines elder abuse as “a single act, or lack or appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust which caused harm or distress to an older person.”

Elder abuse can be deliberate or unintentional.

Elder abuse is a global social issue affecting the health, well-being, independence and human rights of millions of older people worldwide. It is essential that older people and their loved ones can recognize all forms of elder abuse to stop, prevent or, if needed, seek legal action.

There are 6 types of elder abuse:

  1. Physical
  2. Sexual
  3. Financial
  4. Emotional or Psychological
  5. Abandonment
  6. Self-Neglect

This year, World Elder Abuse Day was held on the 15th of June, 2021. It was a day that individuals, communities, and organisations came together to hold events to raise awareness of elder abuse and its effects within the community.

Remember, elder abuse can impact a person’s emotional well-being, which can result in depression and anxiety, as well as a huge loss of trust in the people they trusted the most.

At Better Living Homecare, we have safeguards and policies in place to ensure the safety of our clients. In addition, our staff have been trained on how to identify signs of elder abuse or neglect. Processes have been implemented for how we can best manage this.

Who can you reach out to?

1800 ELDERHelp (1800 353 374) is a free phone line that redirects callers seeking information/advice on elder abuse to the appropriate state or territory.

  • ACT: Adacas (02 6242 5060)
  • NSW: Seniors Rights Service (1800 424 079)
  • NT (central Australia): Catholic Care NT (08 8958 2400)
  • NT (Darwin and top end): Seniors & disability rights service (1800 812 953)
  • QLD: OPAN Network (07 3637 6000)
  • SA: Aged Rights Advocacy Service (1800 700 600)
  • TAS: Advocacy Tasmania (03 6224 2240)
  • VIC: Elder Rights Advocacy (1800 700 600)
  • WA: Advocare (1800 655 566)

Police assistance:

Remember that the police are always there to help. If you’re unsure who to contact or the matter is of an emergency, call 000. The police work to protect any victims of elder abuse by:

  • Seeking a Family Violence Safety Notice or Intervention Order
  • Investigating any criminal acts
  • Assisting with referrals to community services.

For more information on elder abuse, visit

At Better Living Homecare, we are always here to help, so please get in touch on 1300 307 344 if you notice anything unusual or unsafe.

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