New pocket resource for aged care workers to support elder abuse awareness

Release date: 15 Jun 2019

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day today shines a spotlight on the heinous impact of elder abuse and the millions of older people who are abused, neglected or exploited each year.

In recognition of this international day of awareness, Aged & Community Services Australia (ACSA) and Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN) have released a new pocket-sized brochure today. The user-friendly resource provides critical information about how to recognise elder abuse for aged care workers and providers. 

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (15 June) is recognised by the United Nations General Assembly and arose from a global effort to prevent elder abuse.

“This is a broad social issue.  Elder abuse is too widespread, it happens in every social, economic and cultural setting. At the very core of elder abuse is the loss of dignity and basic human rights and it is a scourge on society,” said Patricia Sparrow, CEO of ACSA.

“We are taking action on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, but we are determined to fight elder abuse each and every day wherever it occurs. The first step is making sure that everyone involved in aged care knows what elder abuse is and what to do if they witness it,” said Ms Sparrow.

“We need to make sure that we are listening to those at risk of experiencing elder abuse,” said Craig Gear, OPAN CEO.

“Elder abuse not just a public health concern, it is a human rights issue. There are many different types of elder abuse that aged care workers have to identify.

“Aged care workers need practical tools to assist them to identify abuse and understand how to respond appropriately. The first step in addressing elder abuse is talking about it. We hope this resource is a catalyst for conversations about how to recognise signs of abuse in aged care.

This Saturday, World Elder Abuse Awareness Day will be acknowledged around the world with walks and other events in major cities internationally.

The resource has been designed so that aged care workers can have it on hand or in their pockets for every shift. To get your free copy, please contact ACSA at

If you are concerned that an older person may be at risk or experiencing elder abuse, you can call 1800 ELDER HELP (1800 353 374) for advice.


As the peak body representing church, charitable and community-based organisations providing accommodation and care services to older people, people with a disability and their carers, ACSA can be contacted for comment on issues affecting the industry.

Areas ACSA may provide media commentary on include:  

  • Aged care reforms
  • Residential aged care
  • Home care
  • Independent and retirement living
  • Housing for older Australians
  • Palliative care
  • The aged care workforce in Australia


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