What is Elder Abuse and Neglect?
Elder Abuse occurs when a person aged 65 or more experiences harmful physical, psychological, sexual, material/financial or social effects caused by the behaviour of another person with whom they have a relationship implying trust.
The older person and the abuser are people who know each other well. Statistics from services in New Zealand show that the majority of abuser are members of the kaumatua/older person's family/whanau (partners, sons, daughters, in laws, siblings, grandchildren). Other abusers include people employed in positions of trust - residential facility staff or paid carers.
Elder Abuse Can Mean
Physical - Infliction of physical pain, injury or force - eg: being hit, slapped tied to a chair, withholding food, taking away food before finished.
Psychological / Emotional - behaviour including verbal abuse which causes mental anguish, stress and fear - eg: called names, blackmailed, 'mind games'.
Ignoring - not giving care and attention, not caring for health conditions, leaving the person alone for long periods, not responding to bell in a timely way.
Isolating - physical confinement, restricting normal contact with others, limiting freedom within a persons own environment.
Sexual - sexually abusive and exploitative behaviours involving threats, force of ability to give consent.
Material / Financial - illegal or improper exploitation and/or use of funds or other resources - eg: having money or possessions taken off you.
Neglect occurs as a result of another person failing to meet the physical and emotional needs of an older person/kaumatua.
Active Neglect is a conscious and intentional deprivation.
Passive Neglect is the result of the care's inadequate knowledge, infirmity or lack of trust in prescribed services.
What happens when someone is referred to an EANP Service?
How can we prevent abuse - Respect the persons dignity and individuality by -
Age Concern Tauranga will no longer be providing this service as from the 28 July 2017.
Ministry of Social Development have opened a free and confidential 24/7 help-line, 0800 32 668 65 (0800 EA NOT OK). Calls will be answered by registered nurses who will direct callers to elder abuse specialist service providers in their region.