Older people

It’s not OK for older people to be abused or neglected by family members or caregivers.

Elder abuse and neglect occurs within a relationship of trust, usually by members of the older person’s family/whānau or a paid carer.

Elder abuse is a universal problem, and is not limited to any one gender, religion, cultural, ethnic or income group. Elder abuse is not just physical violence or using force like pushing or slapping. It can be:

  • using older people’s money without consent
  • controlling who they see, who they talk to, where they go
  • taking decisions out of their hands
  • treating them like children
  • name calling and put downs
  • keeping them at home, denying them the care they need
  • locking them in their room so they don’t wander.

Older people have the right to make their own choices and decisions even if we don’t agree with them. They have the right to spend their money as they choose.

If you suspect abuse or neglect speak out. Talk to the older person about your concerns. Encourage and support them to take action.

If you are concerned about violence, there people who can help or offer advice:

 Statistic Tile for printing: STAT TILE ELDER ABUSE [PDF 117 KB]