WEAAD Blog Series

Reflection on WEAAD 2017
Elizabeth Podnieks should be very proud. The creator of World Elder Abuse Awareness (WEAAD) along with her colleagues, had an idea many years ago to bring the world’s attention to the issue of elder abuse.
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We live in an area of the country that has some unique barriers in combatting abuse. The following is from our Aging and Disability Resource Center’s aging plan written by an advisory board member by the name of Tom Kreuck.


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As World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) approaches, the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is planning a variety of activities to engage social workers in preventing, identifying, and addressing elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation.


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As the Administrator of Assessment of Adult Protective Services and Care Management Services for the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, Aging & Disability Services, my department is a seamless, combination of Social Services, Area Agency on Aging, Behavioral Health and Public Health. We are committed to educate, investigate and eradicate elder/vulnerable adult abuse in all its forms.
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For over 25 years, Elder Law of Michigan has assisted seniors with legal, housing, pension, and benefits access issues. While we offer a variety of no-charge services for seniors across Michigan, many of our efforts have important components that focus on a reduction in and prevention of elder abuse cases.


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June 15th is the eleventh commemoration of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD)! This blog is about the power of imagination … how it helped bring us to where we are today, and how it will frame our vision for tomorrow. Quite simply, if you can imagine something, you can really change the world. Imagination allows us to envision the impossible and lead others to help create it.
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For all of us, WEAAD presents a unique and compelling opportunity to show the world how much we care about elder abuse. I hope you won’t let that opportunity pass by without taking some of your precious time to give it attention and action!
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Ever looked for your glasses only to find them perched up on your head? After years and years of seeking for solutions to elder abuse in all the wrong places it has finally presented itself. You...


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Reflection on WEADD
In the absence of a concentrated effort, Elder Abuse will assume intolerable proportions. If we wish to truly address global elder abuse, we must fully consider the demographics and respond to the unprecedented increase in the numbers of older people in the developing world (83% of the global total of 2 billion in 2050).
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Cuando me puse a revisar los resultados de investigaciones referentes al abuso contra las personas de la tercera edad y su relación con la raza y el género de la persona, me puso triste ver que las tasas de maltrato son más altas hacia las minorías raciales y las mujeres.
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Develop Prevention
I’m hopeful because I believe we can prevent elder abuse and neglect. So what’s it going to take? Can we really prevent abuse and neglect? What if each of us behaves just a little bit differently and prevents one older adult from being abused each year?
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Victim Services
For survivors of financial exploitation, neglect, physical, and sexual abuse, success is often "achieved" if the victim is removed from an abusive situation or if there is a prosecution. However, there are countless survivors, who this never happens for and who are not given access to services to help them recover from the trauma, loss, and general aftermath of such a life altering event.
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Elder Voices
The NCEA collaborated with Frank, an elder consumer and member of the NCEA Advisory Board, about his experience with the"grandparent scam” and how he became involved with the NCEA to help promote the theme of "Elder Voices.". He shared how elder justice professionals can better incorporate the insight of elders in their efforts.
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Why is support of research important to the field of elder abuse? Would not scarce available resources be better spent on programs and services to address this problem?
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Long-Term Care
Statistics show that more than 70% of individuals over age 65 living in the U.S. will need long-term services and supports at some point in their lives. An increasing number struggle with dementia, about 50% of nursing home residents, and a growing number of assisted living and community care recipients.
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Caregiving Issues
There is general consensus that unpaid and paid caregivers are often the abusers of older, disabled adults whether in the home or in facilities. There are many reasons for this: inadequate screening, lack of training, few supportive services or adequate supervision to name just a few.
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Yes, the complexity of the elder abuse epidemic requires specialized knowledge and adeptness. But to provide true person-centered care to elder abuse victims and their concerned others, we need to collectivize and coordinate our individual perspectives and skills. Together we can make the life of each victim significantly better.
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Diversity and Inclusion
When I started to look at the research about elder abuse and race and gender, I was saddened to see that the rates of mistreatment are higher for racial minorities and women.
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Building Awareness
Research shows that we have strong feelings about our elders: Love, loyalty, impatience, admiration, guilt, anger, and fear. The problem is that our public awareness efforts have not tapped into these feelings.
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Confronting Ageism
Every day we are faced with “Anti-Aging” rhetoric. It has become apparent that there is a culture of fear in our society concerning aging and a disconnect concerning what it means to age.
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En el caso de las personas que son sobrevivientes de explotación financiera, negligencia, abuso físico o sexual, con frecuencia éxito se "consigue" si la víctima esta retirada de una situación abusiva o hay un enjuiciamiento. Sin embargo, son incontables los sobrevivientes a quienes esto nunca les sucede y a quienes no se les da acceso a servicios que les ayuden a recuperarse del trauma, de la pérdida y de las consecuencias generales que traen consigo este tipo de acontecimientos que transforman la vida.
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