Letter to the Editor: Raising awareness of elder abuse

To the Editor:

June 15, 2022 is World Elder Abuse Day. Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging joins communities across the world to promote awareness and highlight solutions to this systemic social challenge.

As Americans, we believe in justice for all, but we fail to adhere to this value when we allow older members of our communities to be abused or neglected. Older people are vital, contributing members of American society and their maltreatment diminishes everyone. Just as we have confronted the social issues of child abuse and domestic violence, we can also find solutions to address elder abuse, which also threatens the well-being of our community.

Our current policies and practices make it difficult for older people to stay involved with and connected to our communities as they age. As a result, older people are more likely to experience social isolation, which is one of the root causes of elder abuse and neglect. Designing societal supports to keep older people connected and protected will lessen the likelihood of abuse, whether financial, emotional, physical or sexual.

Get more information about how to make a difference by visiting the National Center on Elder Abuse online at https://ncea.acl.gov or by calling Northeast Iowa Area Agency at 866-468-7887 to explore local community resources that are available.

Stacie Speirs
Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging
Regional Director