Every year on June 15, communities around the world join together to raise awareness of elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation. World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is an opportunity to renew our commitment to preserving the rights of older adults – including the basic human right to live with dignity, free from abuse and neglect.
As we confront the COVID-19 virus, and the physical distancing measures necessary to slow its spread, we know that social isolation increases older adults’ risk of experiencing abuse, neglect, and exploitation. We also know fraudsters are taking advantage of this crisis with new scams. This makes WEAAD’s vision of “stronger supports for older adults” more important than ever before.
We hope you will join us in commemorating WEAAD, perhaps in new and creative ways. The Administration for Community Living, the National Center on Elder Abuse, and our federal partners have developed a WEAAD toolkit that includes fact sheets, sample articles and proclamations, graphics, sample social media content, and more to help you get involved.
We also hope you will share your ideas and stories with us. Specifically, we would like to know what your community is doing to ensure older adults are socially connected while practicing physical distancing. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stay tuned to ACL’s listserv, and our Facebook and Twitter pages, for more information and resources over the coming weeks, including details on the next meeting of the Elder Justice Coordinating Council, which will take place on June 10 at 9:30am ET. The virtual meeting will bring together leaders from across the federal government to discuss strategies for advancing elder justice in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.