Arizona Attorney General

Mark Brnovich

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How Do We Outreach To The General Public And Inform Them About Elder Abuse?

A major difficulty in identifying elder abuse is that many abused seniors may be reluctant to admit to abuse because their abuse may be perpetrated by a spouse or an adult child on whom they depend, they may fear institutionalization, or they may fear further harm from the abuser.

An important strategy to address this part of the problem involves helping seniors build self-esteem, gain assertiveness, and independence and encouraging them to plan carefully for their future to avoid potentially abusive situations.

Educational programs are a key to reducing elder abuse in the future and that such programs, using all media, must be expanded, made public and directed towards all generations. However, the development of public awareness campaigns should be approached cautiously until communities have had the opportunity to develop effective response strategies.

In addition to educating people of all ages about abuse and neglect of the elderly, it is also important to educate people of all ages about the process and experience of aging. Such education is important in terms of planning for one's old age, for assisting older relatives in their later years and for changing negative attitudes about aging and the elderly.