Today, the international community unites to recognize World Elder Abuse Awareness Da y: a time to bring visibility to the issue of violence experienced by older adults, express intolerance for abuse, and work toward prevention.  A serious human rights violation that too often goes ignored, elder abuse can include physical, psychological, or sexual abuse; neglect; and financial exploitation. Global data indicates 4 to 6% of adults over the age of 60 have experienced at least one of these types of abuse in the past month alone—a conservative estimate that amounts to 36 million cases worldwide.  In a 2010 study , 1 in 10 community-residing older adults in the United States reported experiencing abuse the previous year. Though both women and men can experience abuse in later life, greater female longevity, coupled with women’s higher risk for poverty and social isolation, suggests that elder abuse is a gendered category of violence. In many respects, violence against older women is an extension of the same social norms that perpetuate violence against women and girls earlier in their lives: entrenched gender bias; impunity for abuse; and unhealthy conceptions of masculinity. In fact, violence by an intimate partner or spouse is a common form of elder abuse, though perpetrators can also be a caregiver outside the family, an adult child, or any other person with whom the victim has a relationship of trust. read more

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Supporting Survivors across the Lifespan: World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, 2015