The World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) 2016
The World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is commemorated each year on 15 June to highlight the often silent suffering of the elder generation. The Day was officially recognized by the United Nations General Assembly in December 2011, following a request by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (INPEA), who first established the commemoration in June 2006.
This is the one day of the year when the whole world voices its opposition to the abuse and suffering inflicted to some defenseless older people. As former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan said at the Second World Assembly on Ageing in 2002: “We will all grow old one day — if we have that luck.”
In many parts of the world elder abuse occurs with little recognition or response. It is a global social issue which affects the Health and Human Rights of millions of older persons around the world, and an issue which deserves the attention of the international community.
Even today, elder abuse continues to be a taboo, mostly underestimated and ignored by societies across the world. Evidence is accumulating, however, to indicate that elder abuse is an important public health and societal problem.
According to the World Health Organization, prevalence rates or estimates exist only in selected developed countries – ranging from 1 to 10 per cent. Although the extent of elder mistreatment is unknown, its social and moral significance is obvious. More effective prevention strategies and stronger policies are needed to address all aspects of elder abuse.
Individuals, communities, municipalities and organizations will come together and hold events to raise awareness of elder abuse on 15 June. As in previous years, many activities will be held, with the hope to bring greater recognition of the mistreatment of older adults wherever they live throughout the world and to highlight the need for appropriate action.
For more information:
United Nations Webcast: Ending Elder Abuse: Breaking the Generational Cycle of Violence
A CSW60 Side Event organised by Mission of Argentina, NGO Committee on Ageing