June 15, 2020

world elder abuse dayThe first World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) was launched on June 15, 2006 by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization at the United Nations (UN) in an effort to unite communities around the world in raising awareness about elder abuse.

When we come together, we can prevent elder abuse from happening. We can put support services in place, and direct community resources toward addressing elder abuse. Our country must reaffirm our commitment to justice and create a sturdy structure of support that will benefit us all as we get older.

Elder abuse is widespread. Every year an estimated 1 in 10 older Americans are victims of elder abuse, neglect, or exploitation. And that’s only part of the picture: Experts believe that elder abuse is significantly under-reported, in part because so many of our communities lack the social supports that would make it easier for those who experience abuse to report it. Research suggests that as few as 1 in 14 cases of elder abuse come to the attention of authorities.

The good news is that we can prevent and address the issue of elder abuse. There are many ways to strengthen our social supports through policies, services, and programs that keep us integrated in our communities as we age.

To learn more about how to identify and prevent elder abuse, check out the online and print resources below. 

To report suspected maltreatment of an older adult or to learn how to get help, talk with a loved one, or make a report contact:

MN Adult Abuse Reporting Center (MAARC) -- 844-880-1574 
or Cook County Public Health and Human Resources Office -- 387-3620

Online resources:

National Center on Elder Abuse

Minnesota Elder Justice Center

Arrowhead Area Agency on Aging

Elder justice and COVID-19  

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College is offering the following free webinars in June. Click here to register or more info

  • What Is Elder Abuse? Commemorating World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
  • COVID-19 Scams: Protecting Yourself and Your Loved Ones
  • Self-Neglect and the Older Adult Population: A Rising Challenge in Our Communities

Print resources:

What Is Elder Abuse - NIH

Signs of Elder Abuse

What You Can Do to Prevent Elder Abuse