It can be difficult for most of us to imagine that anyone could abuse some of our most vulnerable citizens, but elder abuse is a growing problem in Canada.
While there are different types of mistreatment that seniors can experience, the Government of Canada defines elder abuse as:
“Any action by someone in a relationship of trust
that results in harm or distress to an older person.”
Elder abuse can be:
Financial– This abuse can include someone being forced to change their will, or having their property sold or given away without their consent, or with forced consent. It can also involve keeping money, such as a pension check, that belong to a senior. No one has the right to do these things to you, even if you have given someone power of attorney — they must act in your best interests not theirs.
Physical Abuse– Examples of physical abuse include assault and being restrained for long periods of time, either by someone locking you inside, tying you down, or over-medicating you so you cannot get out of bed.
Psychological or Emotional Abuse– No one should be subjected to insults, threats, intimidation, or yelling. However, this form of abuse can also include not allowing certain rights and privileges, like seeing your friends and family, or invading your privacy by interfering with your mail, phone calls, or money matters. Also included is the denial of a safe environment, food and personal care, hygiene, medical and legal services, or preventing opportunities for worship.
If you, or any senior that you know of, are the victim of any type of abuse, please call our non-emergency line at 604-717-3321. If your immediate safety is threatened, please call 9-1-1.