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Report on elder abuse in NZ

August 27, 2015 at 11:25 AM

Report examines elder abuse and neglect in New Zealand

*From the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse*

The Ministry of Social Development has published a report on elder abuse and neglect in New Zealand.

This paper was commissioned by the Office for Senior Citizens and written by Charles Waldegrave from the Family Centre Social Policy Research Unit.

The study is the first New Zealand attempt to estimate the possible prevalence of older people experiencing abuse and neglect. The aim of this study was to provide an evidence base on the prevalence of elder abuse, some of the populations most affected and the observed impacts of it.

The author applied the Vulnerability to Abuse Screening Scale (VASS) which independently examines four dimensions related to elder abuse and neglect: vulnerability, dependence, dejection and coercion. Accordingly it could be considered a measure of vulnerability to abuse rather than the prevalence of abuse, although the vulnerability and coercion scales measure aspects of violence.

The questionnaire was sent by mail to older people (aged 65 to 86 years) living independently or semi-independently. It includes only older people with the capacity to complete the questionnaire. It does not include older people in hospitals or residential institutions.

Two reports are available:

See the NZFVC website for more information

Category: Research