New campaign to focus on respect for Aboriginal Elders

15 June 2020

Monday 15 June 2020

For the first time, Aboriginal community representatives are joining forces with Office for Ageing Well to raise awareness about the rights of older Aboriginal people and the importance of respect for Elders, connection and community.

Office for Ageing Well Director, Cassie Mason, said coinciding with World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, The Stop Elder Abuse campaign will reach out to Aboriginal people across South Australia, using the theme Respect. Connect #StopElderAbuse.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are not immune to elder abuse,” Ms Mason said.

“It is a difficult subject to discuss but in partnership with Aboriginal communities and organisations we hope to communicate how important it is to stand up for the rights of older Aboriginal people.

“Through this partnership, we will co-design a campaign which will use artwork and messaging across social media, video, posters and other channels to target Aboriginal communities.”

The campaign will feature Aboriginal Elders and advocates as ambassadors to spread the word through their communities over the next five years.

“We know there are many barriers to the reporting of mistreatment. This awareness campaign will highlight that there is support for Aboriginal people if they or someone they know is being mistreated,” Ms Mason said.

“The new campaign emphasises that valuing and respecting Elders and older Aboriginal people and their wisdom is the pathway to maintaining culture and building a better future.”

The Australian Institute of Family Studies estimates that up to 14% of older Australians are impacted by elder abuse or mistreatment.

Elder abuse or mistreatment is an act that causes harm to an older person and is carried out by someone they know and trust, such as a family member, friend or care giver. The mistreatment can be physical, social, financial, psychological or sexual and can include neglect.

The South Australian Elder Abuse Prevention phone line on 1800 372 310 provides callers with free confidential information, advice and referral to appropriate services, including advocacy, mediation and legal support.

For more information, visit Stop Elder Abuse.