SHINING a light on the growing social issue of abuse of older people, the Seniors Rights Service (SRS) hosted the fifth National Elder Abuse Conference in Sydney last month.
Speaking at the conference, Attorney-General Christian Porter reassured those present that the Government was committed to protecting the rights of older Australians.
Expressing his surprise at the lack of hard data available on elder abuse, Mr Porter said that late last year the Government announced funding for a national research agenda to improve understanding of the issue.
Following on from this, a national prevalence study has been launched to improve elder abuse interventions and, in the longer term, show whether these had made a difference in the lives of older Australians.
Mr Porter also took the opportunity to announce that Attorneys-General across Australia have agreed to develop a National Plan to address elder abuse, which was a key recommendation of the Australian Law Reform Commission's (ALRC) 2017 report into the issue.
Commonwealth and state and territory governments will be working together in close consultation with older Australians, the business sector and the broader community to develop the plan, which is expected towards the end of this year.
Mr Porter endorsed the ALRC's assertion that preventing elder abuse in an ageing world was everybody's business.
"From this time on in Australia, elder abuse will no longer be someone else's problem, and I am committed to working with you to eradicate it in our community," he said.
The Seniors Rights Service is a NSW-based organisation working to protect the rights of older people. If you have a legal issue, an aged-care advocacy matter or if you would like to learn more about their community rights-based education sessions, call 1800 424 079.