We're experiencing a high volume of calls to our Helpline. Our estimated response time is one week. For more information, click here.


Seniors Rights Victoria at the 7th National Elder Abuse Conference (NEAC)

In February 2022 a group of Seniors Rights Victoria staff and alumni attended the 7th National Elder Abuse Conference (NEAC) in Hobart. 

Starting with a wonderful Welcome To Country, from Aunty Cheryl Mundy, the conference was two packed days of talks and networking. It was a shock to the system for those of us who came from Melbourne, where being in a crowd of people had become a distant memory! 

There were many highlights. In particular, our staff enjoyed: 

  • A presentation from Caxton Legal Centre in Brisbane, in which they analysed their files to examine perpetrator features, ultimately coming up with four perpetrator types in elder abuse matters 
  • Hearing from Anna Bligh of the Australian Banking Association, who reminded us that some of the key recommendations for preventing elder abuse from the report of the Australian Law Reform Commission in 2017 are yet to be taken up, including standard Powers of Attorney (POA) laws nationwide, a national Power of Attorney register to check if POA documents are legitimate and current, and a place to report abuse and investigate suspected cases in every State/Territory 
  • Increasing our knowledge about the many different ways that organisations, including the police, banks and Better Place Australia, are responding to elder abuse 
  • Learning about some innovative prevention models, including a model developed in the United States, that is being trialled in Australia by Relationships Australia, and a prevention campaign designed to reduce financial elder abuse in Aboriginal communities 
  • Discovering an intergenerational portrait project that linked centenarians with teenage artists. The outcomes were a better understanding and connection between the generations, as well as some beautiful portraits that paid homage to the lives the older people have lived. You can see some of the amazing portraits on the Embraced website.

The SRV team also thought economist, Nicki Hutley’s presentation about how economics help bring about policy change was another highlight. Nicki spoke about the economic impacts of elder abuse. Although the cost of elder abuse can be hard to calculate she shared modelling that clearly demonstrated prevention is less costly than a response. 

The conference provided an opportunity to unpack the data from the recent National Elder Abuse Prevalence Study, which was released in December 2021 This is an incredibly important piece of work in the elder abuse space and we look forward to using information from it to move forward with elder abuse prevention and response work over the next 12 months.  

There was much more. You can check out the full program here.

One of the most valuable benefits of the conference was the connections formed. The SRV team networked with people we are already working with, as well as people and organisations that we hadn’t met before. Principal lawyer and SRV Manager, Rebecca Edwards coordinated a networking breakfast with the Older Person’s Legal Advocacy Network. We also bonded as a team in beautiful Hobart. All round it was a great conference and those of us who attended feel privileged to have done so. 

Seniors Rights Victoria presented on the following topics (you can read the abstracts for each presentation here): 

  1. Contributory visas and assurances of support: Recently arrived older people and family conflict  
  1. Impact of Victorian pandemic lockdowns on Seniors Rights Victoria elder abuse services 
  1. Information to help people recently diagnosed with dementia to plan ahead for peace of mind 
  1. Victoria Police’s Financial Elder Abuse trial  

SRV’s Community Education Officer, Lucy Best, also moderated a discussion: Can You Imagine a World Without Ageism. This was inspired by the World Health Organization’s first Global Report on Ageism, which called for greater research into links between ageism and elder abuse.  

Seven of the SRV team attended the 7th National Elder Abuse Conference in Hobart in February 2022
The SRV team that attended NEAC (left to right): Rebecca Edwards, Lyn Dundon, Marnie Coghlan, Carmen Imfeld, Tabitha O'Shea, Lucy Best and Andelka Obradovic

If you, or someone you know is experiencing elder abuse, help is available through our confidential helpline on 1300 368 821.

If it is an emergency, call 000.
Back to Top
Return to top

Subscribe to our newsletter