Canadians encouraged to pledge to be elder abuse prevention champions

Everyone can do something to prevent elder abuse, say WEAAD organizers

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) was June 15, and Canadian organizers are asking people, organizations and policymakers across the country to make a pledge this year to become champions of elder abuse prevention.

Individuals can work towards ending elder abuse by educating themselves on what elder abuse is, what the symptoms are and how they can prevent it from happening. People can also work with their communities to make elder abuse prevention a top priority, the WEAAD website states.

Organizations, the website says, can adopt ageism prevention into their equity, diversity and inclusion practices.

The WEAAD website also says elected officials and policymakers can take steps to make their communities age-friendly and invest in elder abuse prevention strategies.

“We all have a role to play in protecting the rights of older people,” the WEAAD website states. “No matter where you live in Canada, you can be part of this shared journey to create a safe and supportive society.”

To help Canadians get involved in the effort to prevent elder abuse, Elder Abuse Prevention Ontario and the Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse have collaborated to create a document called Future Us: Roadmap to Elder Abuse Prevention.

This toolkit has three goals: to prioritize elder abuse prevention in every community; to establish elder abuse prevention networks at local, regional and national levels; and to educate people on recognizing what elder abuse is and how to prevent it.

The Future Us roadmap is aimed at engaging people who want to work towards the common goal of preventing elder abuse across Canada.

WEAAD was first marked on June 15, 2006, by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization at the United Nations.

Since then, WEAAD events and activities have been held worldwide to bring attention to the issue of elder abuse. Organizations and communities have been encouraged to host awareness days and lead discussions about the prevention of elder abuse.

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