Thursday, October 11, 2007

Rise of Relatives Abusing Elderly

By Tara Mills BBC Newline

"The sad reality is most abuse of the elderly happens at home from their own families."

The age group most likely to be targeted is 80- 89-year-olds. The abuse can be verbal, physical and even sexual.

Joan Cosgrove, chair of the Newtownabbey Senior Citizens Forum, said she was "shocked by the statistics".

"Elder abuse needs to be brought up to the same level as domestic violence. The older perpetrators must be treated in exactly the same way as the younger perpetrators.

"It's extremely hard to report - how do you tell someone that your son or daughter is abusive towards you? But people must come forward. It should not matter what age you are. Abuse is abuse is abuse."

Daniel Blake from AEA said there needed to be a culture change in attitudes towards this issue.

Women's Aid and AEA both want to see the problem being taken more seriously by the courts.

abridged for E.A. >>

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