A campaign launched on Wednesday is encouraging the public to recognise the signs of elder abuse and to take action to stop it when they see it occuring.

SA Government public awareness campaign on elder abuse
SA Government public awareness campaign on elder abuse

South Australian Minister for Ageing Zoe Bettison said the education push highlights the types of elder abuse and the signs to look for, as well as providing people with more information and support.

The South Australian Elder Abuse Prevention Phone Line (1800 372 310) has been set up to provide a confidential, state wide service for those at risk of or experiencing abuse.

As part of the campaign, advertisements will run on radio and print media, across social media, on bus shelters as well as in washrooms and doctors rooms, said Ms Bettison.

The government is also urging the community to download free posters, postcards and infographics to share among their networks to raise attention to the issue and their role in elder abuse prevention.

“Around 1 in 20 older Australians experience some form of financial, emotional, physical or sexual abuse from a person they know and trust,” said Ms Bettison.

She said the most common elder abuse cases were financial and emotional, and 80 per cent of the time it was carried out by a family member.

“It is important that as a community we have a clear understanding of the rights of older people and how they can be protected. These rights do not disappear with age,” Ms Bettison said yesterday.

The campaign is a key action from the Strategy to Safeguard the Rights of Older South Australians, Action Plan 2015-2021.

Aged care state peak body Aged and Community Services SA & NT welcomed the initiative as an important step forward in recognising the rights of older Australians and reporting elder abuse.

Read also: Elder abuse: an under-recognised phenomenon

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