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How You Can Identify Abuse and Help Older Adults at Risk.

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Presentation on theme: "How You Can Identify Abuse and Help Older Adults at Risk."— Presentation transcript:

1 How You Can Identify Abuse and Help Older Adults at Risk

2 “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Agenda Welcome Presentation (15-20 minutes) Case discussions Wrap-up and questions Your feedback

3 “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Everyone has the right to be safe and free from abuse or neglect. We have a shared responsibility to create safe, strong, healthy communities.

4 People who are abused need support. People who are abusive need help. Neighbours, friends and family members can make a difference. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

5 What Is Abuse of Older Adults? Harm caused to older adults by someone who limits or controls their rights and freedoms. The older adults are unable to freely make choices because they are afraid of being hurt, humiliated, or left alone, or of the relationship ending. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

6 What Is Abuse of Older Adults? Abuse is NOT just impolite or rude behaviour. It IS abuse when one person uses power or influence to take advantage of, or to control, the older adult. Neglect of older adults who cannot manage on their own is also abuse. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

7 What Is Abuse of Older Adults? Abuse can make a person feel small, alone and powerless.

8 Ageism is a factor in abuse. It is discrimination against older adults because they are older. You’re too old. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults What Is Ageism? That’s ageism!

9 Who Are the Abusers? “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Not monsters but people we know…

10 Who Are the Abusers? “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Most often, abusers are family members—adult children or grandchildren. Abusers can also be other relatives or friends, paid/unpaid caregivers, landlords, financial advisors, or anyone in a position of power, authority or trust.

11 Who Are the Abusers? “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Abuse that happens between spouses is called domestic violence. Men are less likely to speak to someone about being abused themselves.

12 Who Is at Risk of Abuse? Abuse can happen at any age to any person. I never thought it would happen to me! Or me! “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

13 Why Are Some People More at Risk? People who are abused are often isolated. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults I may be isolated because of my culture or language. The person abusing me might keep me away from people who can help. As abuse escalates I become more and more isolated.

14 There Are Other Risk Factors Too… You are more at risk if you live with someone. Addictions sometimes play a role in abuse. Depression and other mental health issues Living with someone who is dependent on you Cognitive impairment “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

15 Types of Abuse Financial abuse Financial abuse Emotional abuse Emotional abuse Violation of rights and freedoms Violation of rights and freedoms Sexual abuse Sexual abuse Neglect Physical abuse Physical abuse

16 Financial Abuse “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults It is abuse if I pressure you into giving me your money… …or if I persuade you to assign power of attorney to me.

17 Emotional Abuse I may call you names. I might not let you see your friends. I will tell you it’s all your fault! Please don’t yell at me. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

18 Violation of Rights and Freedoms No, you can’t have your beliefs! Your faith is stupid! “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

19 Sexual Abuse Any kind of sexual activity you don’t want. Abuse can be verbal or suggestive behaviour… or not respecting your privacy. Please don’t! “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults It is sexual assault if I don’t stop.

20 Neglect “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults I might intentionally ignore your basic human needs to punish you. I might neglect you because I don’t have the skills or ability to really help. Both are neglect. I am dependent on you for some things.

21 Physical Abuse “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults It is abuse if you hit me or handle me roughly—even if there is no injury. A threat to hurt me is also abuse.

22 If I tell you I am being abused— believe me. I become depressed and withdrawn or fearful. I stop attending social events or church. I have injuries I can’t explain. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Warning Signs Signs of neglect such as no food in the house. My phone is cut off, or things start disappearing from my house. Someone suddenly moves in with me.

23 Its a Journey Two things to take with you. Two things everyone can do. “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

24 It’s a Journey 1. SEE it! 2. CHECK it! “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

25 Two Things Everyone Can Do 1.SEE it! “It’s not right!” Learn about abuse Recognize the warning signs Overcome your hesitation to help “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

26 Two Things Everyone Can Do 2. CHECK it! “Is it abuse? What can I do to help?” Ask questions Check with a professional Check for danger Suggest safety planning “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

27 How to Talk to the Older Adult “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Find a time when the abusive person is not present. Describe what you heard or saw—stick to the facts. Listen carefully— ask how you can help. Respect if he/she doesn’t want to talk about it— leave the door open.

28 Finding Help Emergencies: 911 Senior Abuse Information and Referral Line: Adult Protection: Legal information: ( in Halifax) Other help lines and websites Your neighbours, friends, and family members “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults

29 Circles of Care Relatives Social groupsProfessionals FriendsNeighbours Faith groups “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Stay connected. Work together.

30 2. CHECK it! “It’s Not Right!” Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults Try it now… 1. SEE it!


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