Elder Abuse Strategy

The WA Strategy to Respond to the Abuse of Older People (Elder Abuse) is a 10-year strategy to address all forms of elder abuse, reduce its incidence and encourage whole-of-community involvement.

Elder abuse affects many older Western Australians and may involve financial, social, physical, sexual, psychological, and emotional abuse.

On 18 November 2019, Communities released Western Australia’s first ever strategy into elder abuse: The WA Strategy to Respond to the Abuse of Older People (Elder Abuse). This 10-year strategy is a blueprint for the priorities, actions and outcomes required to effectively prevent and respond to the abuse of older people.

The Elder Abuse Strategy includes four priority areas: raising awareness and early identification; prevention and early intervention; integrated and coordinated response; and data and evidence.

All Western Australians have a role to play in preventing the abuse of older people, so we encourage you to get involved. Start by being fully informed: download the Elder Abuse Strategy below. Together, we can stop elder abuse!

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

About World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2022

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Read about how the Department of Communities (Communities) is involved in World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2022.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is commemorated on 15 June each year. On this day people are encouraged to make a united stand against all forms of abuse against older people in our global communities.

In addition to our commitment to reduce elder abuse in Western Australia through the Elder Abuse Strategy, Communities works in partnership with key stakeholders each year to recognise and promote WEAAD as well as encouraging people to wear purple (the symbolic colour of WEAAD) to show their support.

Communities has collaborated with our partners funded to deliver elder abuse services (Advocare, Council on the Ageing Western Australia (COTA WA), Legal Aid WA, Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre (NSCLC)) and Bankwest to recognise WEAAD and facilitate a range of community service sector initiatives to help raise awareness of elder abuse. Some key initiatives include:

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2022 initiatives and events

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Read about some key initiatives and events taking place in Western Australia during World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2022.

What's happening on 15 June 2022:

  • digital screens in metropolitan and regional Bankwest branches will promote WEAAD
  • public libraries in Western Australia will distribute elder abuse awareness bookmarks to help inform people and advocate supports available for older Western Australians
  • iconic Perth landmarks, including Optus Stadium, Bankwest’s Wentworth Building, Matagarup Bridge, Council House, Trafalgar Bridge Fraser Avenue in Kings Park, Elizabeth Quay and the Bell Tower will be lit in purple
  • information displays and merchandise giveaways, in partnership with Bankwest and our community service providers, at Karrinyup Shopping Centre and Mandurah Forum
  • displays of the Purple Road between 10:00am-10:30am at Karrinyup Shopping Centre and at Mandurah Forum between 1:00pm-1:30pm. (NSCLC have proposed further displays of the Purple Road and we encourage you to visit the NSCLC website for more information). The Purple Road Project shines a light on deeply personal and collective experiences of elder abuse in WA. Please see the Purple Road Project on Communities website for more detailed information  
  • a virtual invitation-only launch of the Elder Rights WA Service by Legal Aid WA as initially announced by the WA State Government in March 2022 attended by the Hon Donald Punch MLA along with representatives from the Alliance for the Prevention of Elder Abuse Western Australia (APEA WA) and relevant stakeholders.

Other key events:

  • the delivery of a series of 10 talks at the Multicultural Service Centre WA (MSCWA) to raise awareness of elder abuse during the month of June by Legal Aid WA. (This will be a closed invitation-only event)
  • a free State-wide webinar ‘WA Seniors Sector: Responding to Elder Abuse’ presented by COTA WA on Tuesday, 14 June from 9:30am-11:00am. The forum is dedicated to educating and informing the Seniors sector workforce including - aged-care workers, allied health and social workers, police, legal support and advocates who may witness acts of elder abuse or may need to respond to incidents of elder abuse. The Microsoft Teams link to this event will be published here as soon as it's available. 
  • the launch of the COTA WA Guide ‘Understanding the Mistreatment of Older People’ on 14 June, a copy of the guide will be available on the COTA website
  • 15, 16 and 22 June Advocare will facilitate a series of ‘Ready to Listen. Be Ready to Act’ webinars for community and service provider audiences. To find out more about Advocare’s online webinar series and how to register or for more information on the WA Elder Abuse Helpline please visit Advocare
  • there may be other events taking place in your community to commemorate WEAAD and we encourage you to contact our partner organisations Advocare, COTA Western Australia, Legal Aid Western Australia and Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre for further information.

Please join us in acknowledging this globally significant day by wearing something purple for WEAAD on Wednesday, 15 June; addressing elder abuse is everyone’s business.

Page reviewed 2 June 2022