South Australia’s Office for Ageing Well, is committed to a whole-of-life-course approach to the health and wellbeing of older South Australians, as outlined in South Australia’s Plan for Ageing Well 2020-2025.

Extensive consultation with a wide range of older people, stakeholders and partners, has shaped Future Directions to Safeguard the Rights of Older South Australians 2023-2027 (PDF 2MB), which sets the statewide direction, strategic priorities and conditions to raise awareness of, and prevent and respond to abuse and mistreatment of older people.

Future Directions aims to safeguard the rights of older South Australians, tackle ageism and prevent and address abuse and mistreatment.

It recognises the need for coordinated partnerships and takes an individual, community and systems approach.

Foundational principles

Future Directions to Safeguard the Rights of Older South Australians 2023-2027 contains three Foundational principles that guide decision-making and implementation:

Foundational Principle 1 - Work with older people as experts and the agents of change

To live well and minimise vulnerabilities to harm, older people must be recognised as the ultimate experts and authorities in their lives.

Foundational Principle 2 - Trauma informed approach

It is fundamental to consider and gain an understanding of how people’s histories impact their lives now. This trauma informed approach to ageing then informs how support or services are provided or delivered.

Foundational Principle 3 - Respect people and diversity

Acknowledge and respond to older people’s diversity, individuality and culture.

Strategic priorities

Older people identified four Strategic priorities as crucial to safeguarding rights and preventing abuse:

Age inclusive society

Older South Australians are treated with respect, without prejudice, discrimination or being stereotyped, no matter their age.

Organisations, services and supports work for people

Organisations, services and supports have the capability and flexibility to adapt to individual circumstances and changing needs of older South Australians.

Connected people and communities

Older South Australians have the opportunity to create and maintain meaningful connections to people and communities to reduce social isolation and loneliness.

Safe and secure homes

Greater choice and access to homes where older South Australians feel safe, have secure tenure and can live on their own terms.

Supporting conditions

Four Supporting conditions are seen as critical to achieving successful outcomes:

Growing access to support from peers

Greater options and access for older South Australians to receive support and services from peers.

Preparedness and choice

South Australians are better prepared for their older years and understand their choices.

Fostering intergenerational relationships

Opportunities that value and foster relationships and connections between people of all ages.

Inclusive technology

Technology works for all older South Australians and does not create reliance on others for its use.