World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2024 (15th June), Theme, History

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World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2024

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is a yearly event that takes place on June 15th to increase awareness and understanding of the mistreatment, discrimination, and neglect faced by older individuals. The day serves as a platform to highlight the rights of elderly people and promote a society that values and respects their presence.

It aims to draw attention to the different types of abuse, abandonment, and exploitation experienced by seniors. It also emphasizes the importance of protecting their well-being and preserving their dignity. This day encourages individuals and communities to take action and advocate for the rights and welfare of older adults.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day Theme 2024

The official theme for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2024 is “Prioritizing Dignity, Safety, and Wellbeing for Older Survivors of All Identities”.

Remember, even small actions can make a difference in preventing elder abuse. Be a voice for those who may not be able to speak for themselves, educate others, and support organizations working to protect older adults. Together, we can create a world where every elder can live their later years with dignity, safety, and respect.

History of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day was established by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (INPEA) in 2006. It gained further recognition when the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/66/127 in 2011. It designated June 15th as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

The resolution calls upon all Member States, United Nations organizations, international and regional organizations, civil society, non-governmental organizations, and individuals to observe this day suitably. The aim is to raise awareness about elder abuse and encourage various stakeholders to take action to prevent and address the mistreatment and neglect experienced by older adults worldwide.

What is Elder Abuse?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), elder abuse is defined as a harmful or distressing action, or the lack of appropriate action, occurring within a relationship where there is an expectation of trust, and involving an older person. It can manifest in different forms, including physical, psychological/emotional, sexual, and financial abuse. Elder abuse can also result from intentional or unintentional neglect, where the needs of older individuals are not adequately met. It is crucial to address and prevent elder abuse to ensure the well-being and safety of older adults.

Addressing Elder Abuse

  • Around 1 in 6 individuals aged 60 years and older have experienced some form of abuse in community settings within the past year.
  • Rates of elder abuse are particularly high in institutional settings like nursing homes and long-term care facilities, with 2 in 3 staff members reporting incidents of abuse in the past year.
  • The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the problem, leading to an increase in elder abuse cases.
  • Between 2019 and 2030, the global population of individuals aged 60 years or older is projected to increase by 38%, reaching 1.4 billion.
  • This growth will be most significant in developing countries, surpassing the number of youth. It is crucial to recognize the specific challenges faced by older persons, particularly in the context of human rights.
  • Elder abuse is a widespread issue that affects both developing and developed countries, although it is often underreported globally.
  • Prevalence rates or estimates are available only for selected developed countries, ranging from 1% to 10%.
  • Despite the lack of precise data on the extent of elder mistreatment, its social and moral implications are evident.
  • As many countries are facing rapidly aging populations, it is predicted that the incidence of elder abuse will continue to rise.
  • Elder abuse can have severe consequences, including physical injuries and long-term psychological effects.

Therefore, addressing elder abuse requires a comprehensive global response that prioritizes the protection of the rights of older persons.

15th June 2024 Special Day

15th June carries societal significance as we observe World Elder Abuse Awareness Day in 2024. Coinciding fittingly with the summer season annually, this commemoration confronts the stark reality of older individuals being exploited worldwide. The unique timing provides an opportune moment to catalyze efforts protecting elder rights while spreading awareness to end ageist practices. As activists and communities coordinate internationally on this particular 2024 date, the message resonates clearly – elder abuse hinders human progress and intergenerational solidarity.


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