Elder abuse happens in Queensland – and it’s up to all Queenslanders to know the signs and make the abuse stop.
That’s the message the Palaszczuk Government is sharing ahead of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day tomorrow (15 June).
Minister for Seniors Coralee O’Rourke today (14 June) launched the Queensland Government’s annual elder abuse awareness campaign at Parliament House in Brisbane, highlighting the campaign’s message of ‘Elder Abuse happens. Know the signs, make it stop’.
“Sadly, we know from the data collected by the Palaszczuk Government funded UnitingCare Community’s Elder Abuse Prevention Unit, that elder abuse is happening all around Queensland,” Mrs O’Rourke said.
“The good news is, thanks to our awareness campaigns, more Queenslanders are recognising the signs of elder abuse and seeking support through the Elder Abuse Helpline and our seniors legal and support services.
“In 2017-18, the Elder Abuse Helpline reported a 17 percent increase in calls from the year before, with the most commonly reported forms of elder abuse being financial (1511 calls) and psychological (1207 calls).”
Throughout June, the Palaszczuk Government’s elder abuse awareness campaign will be promoted in newspapers, on trains, and via digital and social media advertising.
Mrs O’Rourke said the campaign was an opportunity to connect older Queenslanders at risk of, or experiencing elder abuse, with support.
“In the 2019-20 State Budget, the Palaszczuk Government has committed more than $4.8 million to raising awareness, responding to, and preventing, elder abuse,” she said.
“This includes ongoing funding for our seniors legal and support services and seniors financial protection services in 10 Queensland towns and cities.
“We’re also continuing to provide funding to UnitingCare to run the Elder Abuse Prevention Unit, including the Elder Abuse Helpline.
Mrs O’Rourke said responding to, and raising awareness of, elder abuse was a key priority of the Palaszczuk Government.
“We believe that older Queenslanders deserve to live their golden years free from abuse or financial scams,” she said.
“Elder abuse prevention is one of our commitments under the Queensland: an age friendly community action plan.
“We want to create thriving, age-friendly communities where Queenslanders, regardless of their age, can live free from abuse, participate and be included in their communities and enjoy social and economic wellbeing.”