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The people of Sandwell urged to challenge and prevent elder abuse on 15 June

Published 9th June 2022

On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (15 June), people in Sandwell will be urged to join global communities to raise awareness about the increasing problem of elder abuse and to prevent it happening.

The day was officially recognised by the United Nations General Assembly in 2011 and represents the one day in the year when the whole world voices its opposition to the abuse and suffering inflicted on some of our older generations.

Older people are particularly vulnerable to abuse, including:

  • physical abuse
  • domestic violence
  • sexual abuse
  • psychological or emotional abuse
  • financial or material abuse
  • organisational or institutional abuse
  • neglect or acts of omission, and
  • coercive control.

On average, older victims experience abuse for twice as long as those aged under 61 before seeking help, with nearly half of those affected having a disability.

They may be unable to defend themselves, and fear or infirmity can be major barriers to seeking and getting help.

Sometimes spotting and challenging abuse in older people isn’t easy. Some are isolated, having outlived family and friends; and some are abused in institutions where abuse is not spotted or is covered up.

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic abuse and needs support, you can contact Black Country Women's Aid, which provides a range of services and support to women and men experiencing domestic abuse from all communities, ethnicities and backgrounds.

You can contact them 24 hours a day on 0121 552 6448 or by WhatsApp on 07384 466181or via webchat (the text takes you to a web link).

Alternatively, Ask Marc is a service for men and boys who have experienced domestic abuse, rape and sexual abuse. Contact Ask Marc by phone (0121 289 6402), email info@askmarc.co.uk or for more information visit Ask Marc (the text takes you to a web link).

Age UK Sandwell offers a free, confidential information and advice service for people aged 50 and over, their families and carers. For more information phone 0121 437 0479 or visit Age UK Sandwell (the text takes you to a web link).

Birmingham LGBT Centre can provide a range of support services for LGBT victims – visit: blgbt.org/ (the text takes you to a web link).

You can also contact Sandwell Council’s Housing Solutions Team on 0121 368 1166, Option 2 for Housing Solutions or email: housing_choice@sandwell.gov.uk/

Councillor Danny Millard, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for communities, said: “The abuse of older people is an increasing and serious problem, so it is vital that we all raise awareness of it and prevent it on World Elder Abuse Awareness Day and beyond. Sandwell Council works with a range of partners throughout the year to help those experiencing domestic abuse.

“People of any age can be affected by domestic abuse, but older people can be particularly vulnerable to certain forms of abuse and they are likely to be dependent on the person abusing them. Older people deserve the same dignity and respect as people of all other age groups.

“If domestic abuse is happening to you or someone you know, it’s important that that you tell someone – you don’t have to wait for an emergency to find help.”

Find out more about domestic abuse (the text takes you to a web link).

Find out more information about World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (the text takes you to a web link).