What is Elder Abuse?
Elder abuse is any form of mistreatment or neglect that occurs when one person has power or authority over another person. It can be physical, but it can also be emotional and/or financial. Elder abuse is typically a type of mistreatment that occurs when a person—typically an older adult—does not receive the care, protection and services he or she deserves.
The most common forms of elder abuse include physical, emotional, sexual, and financial abuse. Some other common examples of elder abuse include:
Physical Abuse: hitting, pushing, kicking, or other actions that cause harm to the body
Emotional Abuse: name-calling and belittling behavior (such as telling someone they are stupid or worthless)
Sexual Abuse: forcing someone to have sex against their will or making them feel uncomfortable with sexual comments/gestures
Financial Abuse: stealing money/personal items from someone else or misusing their credit cards without permission
Why is elder abuse important in senior living?
Senior citizens are at risk of being abused because they may be more vulnerable than other people; they may have health issues that make them less able to defend themselves, or they may not have anyone else to speak up on their behalf. Elder abuse can also happen when someone who cares for a senior citizen takes advantage of them—for instance, by stealing money from them or preventing them from having contact with friends and family members. For this reason, property staff must be vigilant in identifying visitors who may be trying to take advantage of seniors.