‘Wise Up, Rise Up’ On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

  • World Elder Abuse Awareness Day tomorrow (June 15)
  • Buildings and landmarks will be lit up in purple across WA
  • Research shows that 15 per cent of older Australians have experienced elder abuse

Western Australians are urged to ‘Wise Up, Rise Up Against Elder Abuse’ in recognition of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) tomorrow.

WEAAD is recognised annually on 15 June, designated by the United Nations since 2011 as an opportunity for people around the world to unite in voicing opposition to elder abuse and the suffering it inflicts upon victims.

Research by the Australian Institute of Family Studies shows that 15 per cent of Australians aged 65 years and over who live in the general community have experienced elder abuse.

The theme ‘Wise Up, Rise Up Against Elder Abuse’ will focus on how the community can support older Western Australians to find out more about elder abuse, recognise the signs, and where to access support and take action in their own lives and communities to prevent it from happening.

Buildings and landmarks across WA will be lit up in the colour purple, the symbolic colour of WEAAD, including the Bell Tower, Elizabeth Quay, Matagarup Bridge, Fremantle Prison, Fremantle Shipwrecks Museum, Karratha Red Earth Arts Precinct and the Kununurra Magistrates Court.

Additionally, the Purple Road installation at Parliament House launched earlier this week will mark a significant achievement with the community artwork reaching 100 metres.

The Purple Road is a collaborative initiative developed by the Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre’s Older People’s Rights Service, with thousands of hand-crafted purple flowers representing an older person’s unique story.

For the second year in a row, the Cook Government has also provided funding of up to $3000 for regional local governments and registered not-for-profit organisations around the State to hold initiatives during the week of WEAAD.

Events planned include information workshops, education seminars, morning teas and art projects to support local people to work together to identify and respond to elder abuse in their local community.

The grants program is being funded by the Department of Communities and managed by the Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre.

For more information about WEAAD events around WA and the complete list of landmarks lit up in purple tomorrow, go to World Elder Abuse Awareness Day – events (www.wa.gov.au)

If you or anyone you know is experiencing elder abuse, please contact the WA Elder Abuse Helpline and Information Service on 1300 724 679. This program is funded by the Department of Communities and delivered by Advocare.

As stated by Seniors and Ageing Minister Don Punch:

“Elder abuse is a significant issue in our community which is growing momentum for action at a local, national and international level.

“It is a complex social, health and human rights issue experienced and carried out by people of all backgrounds.

“I encourage all Western Australians to get involved and ‘Wise Up, Rise Up against Elder Abuse’ in the community.

“We can all ‘wise up’ by finding out more about elder abuse, how to recognise the signs, and where to access support.

“We can ‘rise up’ by taking the time to listen to older people in our lives about what is important to them, if they feel safe and valued, and take action in to support older Western Australians.”

/Public Release. View in full here.