Elder abuse is a global public health issue. Abuse exists in both developing and developed countries and is typically underreported. Although the extent of elder mistreatment is unknown, its social and moral significance is clear. Elder abuse demands a global, multifaceted response that focuses on the protection of older people’s rights. We have an obligation to lead the fight against elder abuse, both domestically and abroad.
According to the World Health Organization, the global population of people aged 60 years and older will reach almost 1.2 billion in 2025. With this reality in mind, the Administration for Community Living is joining with Human Resources and Skill Development Canada, the United Nation’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs, and other international partners to recognize World Elder Abuse Awareness Day at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City on Friday, June 14, 2013. Along with representatives from the United Nations, Canada, and other governments, I will share remarks and highlight the great importance of this global health issue. This will be videotaped and archived by the United Nations for future viewing. After this portion of the program, we will convene at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, and speakers from AARP, HelpAge International, and the United Nation's NGO Committee on Aging, will offer the perspectives of non-governmental organizations.
On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (officially observed on June 15, 2013), individuals and organizations from around the world are asked to raise awareness about the various types of abuse to which older individuals are subjected. I hope you will join me and make this year’s observance a strong success in the United States and beyond. As I’ve stated before, every single person—advocates, policymakers, professionals, family members, and friends—must do their part to fight elder abuse.
Take a stand in the fight against elder abuse and a stand for the dignity and respect of our elders!
Looking for ways to commemorate World Elder Abuse Awareness Day this year? As part of the Year of Elder Abuse Prevention, the Administration for Community Living is pleased to provide information, tools, and resources to support partners in their efforts to raise public awareness about elder abuse and shed light on the importance of preventing, identifying, and responding to this serious, often hidden problem. Check out the WEAAD section on ACL.gov for resources when planning your activities.