Elder abuse is any act which causes harm to an older person and is carried out by someone they know and trust, usually a family member. The abuse may be physical, social, financial, psychological and/or sexual and can include mistreatment and neglect.

The Royal Commission into Family Violence recognised elder abuse as a form of family violence featuring the unique dynamics between the older person and a family member such as an adult child. It can also present as short or long term intimate partner violence, carer abuse or stress and long standing family conflict.

For community information, factsheets and resources on elder abuse, visit Seniors Online.

The Victorian Government’s Elder Abuse Prevention and Response Initiative

In 2006, the Victorian Government established the Elder Abuse Prevention and Response Initiative. At this time, an Elder Abuse Prevention Advisory Group was also set up to provide advice to the Elder Abuse Prevention and Response Initiative. The advisory group consists of representatives from key sectors and government agencies.

The Elder Abuse Prevention and Response Initiative includes the following:

Working with culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities

The Victorian Government funds the Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria (ECCV) to work in partnership with Seniors Rights Victoria to raise community awareness of elder abuse in ethnic communities.

In October 2014, ECCV launched Within My Walls, a community education short film on elder abuse, available in 14 languages. For more information visit the project website Elder abuse prevention in ethnic communities.