Being alert to elder abuse in our communities is always important, especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Research shows family violence often increases during major crises and disruptions, which means some older Queenslanders may be at increased risk of abuse at this time. Social and physical isolation, or shared living space with a person who may behave abusively, could heighten the risks.
Elder abuse is a single or repeated act — or lack of appropriate action — occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust, which causes harm or distress to an older person. Most cases of elder abuse occur within family relationships.
Elder abuse can be perpetrated in various forms — as physical, emotional/psychological, financial or sexual abuse, or neglect.
Now is a time when we need to look out for each other, particularly those who are most vulnerable.
If you suspect that an older person you know is being abused, or are experiencing elder abuse yourself, phone the Elder Abuse Helpline on 1300 651 192 — anyone can make the call.
The helpline remains open and available (9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday) during the pandemic to provide confidential information, advice and referrals.
For more information about elder abuse, visit www.qld.gov.au/knowthesigns
Click here for further information on elder abuse and COVID-19: Elder Abuse and covid19 Fact sheet.