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The abuse and neglect of older adults involves any form of mistreatment of an older person by a caregiver, family member, spouse, friend or other individuals in situations of power or trust. Forms of mistreatment may include physical assault or abuse,sexual assault, psychological or emotional abuse, financial abuse or neglect.
The abuse and neglect of older adults can be a one-time occurrence or a continuous pattern of behaviour that may start in small ways and escalate over a period of time to more overt or violent behaviour. If you or an older person you know is a victim of abuse or violence, help is available through victim services and other resources.
To learn more about Abuse and Neglect of Older Adults, see the Help Starts Here infosheet
Did You Know?
The Criminal Code protects the rights of seniors to live free of abuse. In BC, the Adult Guardianship Act provides for adults who are unable to get help because of a physical constraint, disability or other condition.
Designated agencies respond to reports of abuse or neglect involving adults in these circumstances and notify police if they think a criminal offence has been committed. Other laws that protect seniors are the Public Guardian and Trustee Act, the Representation Agreement Act, Community Care and Assisted Living Act , and the Health Care (Consent) and Care Facility (Admission) Act.
VictimLink BC is a toll-free 24/7 information and support line that provides information and referrals to all victims of crime, and crisis support to victims of family and sexual violence, including sexual assault, violence in relationships, elder abuse, and adult survivors of physical or sexual abuse. VictimLink BC provides service in 110 languages, including 17 North American Aboriginal languages.
BC Centre for Elder Advocacy and Support
BC CEAS works to prevent elder abuse and provide assistance and support to older adults that are, or may be, abused and whose rights have been violated.
Crime Victim Assistance Program
Crime Victim Assistance Program provides financial benefits to assist victims, immediate family members, and witnesses in dealing with the affects of violent crime.
Health and Seniors’ Information Line
The Health and Seniors’ Information Line provides information on both health and non-health related federal and provincial government programs and services for British Columbia seniors
HealthLinkBCis a gateway to non-emergency health information and services. A phone service, website and print resource provides an expanded health navigation system, access to advice from healthcare professionals and enables community members to look up symptoms and services.
Public Guardian and Trustee
The Public Guardian and Trustee provides assistance to adults who need support for financial and personal decision making.
Regional Health Authorities
Regional Health Authorities provide health care and services across British Columbia. Website provides a directory and contact information for these different health authorities.
BC Association of Community Response Networks
The B.C. Association of CRNs grew out of the need to create an on-going, permanent provincial funding and support structure for the benefit of local Community Response Networks, and adults in their communities experiencing abuse, neglect and self-neglect.