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Case worker trial to tackle abuse of elderly

 A ground breaking  trial will offer better support to NSW seniors experiencing elder abuse.

Minister for Ageing Tanya Davies today announced $150,000 will fund the trial in which case workers will better co-ordinate services working to mitigate or resolve elder abuse cases.

“The NSW Government is leading the way nationally by trialling this kind of support for older people,” Mrs Davies said.

“It’s completely unacceptable that family members, friends or complete strangers would take advantage of older people. Seniors deserve nothing less than respect and the freedom to feel physically and financially safe.”

The trial, to begin in March at the NSW Elder Abuse Helpline and Resource Unit, will see a case worker manage complex elder abuse cases and offer assistance beyond the normal referral service. They will coordinate services such as police, Family and Community Services, health and disability services, and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse organisations.

Research shows abuse of older people is most often committed by a family member. Psychological and financial abuse are the most common types, with emotional abuse and neglect also reported.

“Older people are often reluctant to report their own children or relatives and may not have the means to address these problems on their own. We hope this trial will demonstrate that we can change this,” Mrs Davies said.

Programs in the USA, Canada and New Zealand have informed this ground breaking  trial.

The NSW Government introduced the State’s first Elder Abuse Helpline and Resource Unit in 2013 to improve access to support and resources to identify and respond to elder abuse. Since established to December 2017, the Helpline has received more than 7180 calls relating to suspected cases of abuse.

The announcement comes ahead of the 5th National Elder Abuse Conference being held in Sydney tomorrow, supported by the NSW Government and Seniors Rights Service.

Anyone who witnesses, experiences or suspects elder abuse should call the Helpline on 1800 628 221 or visit In an emergency call ‘000’.  Further information on tomorrow’s conference can be found at