On March 24th 2022, the Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (CNPEA) launched Future Us: a Pan-Canadian Roadmap to the Prevention of Elder Abuse. The roadmap has three goals:
elder abuse prevention in every community.
elder abuse prevention networks at local, regional and national levels. Networks are critical infrastructure for information sharing, knowledge mobilization, research, and ongoing engagement across sectors and communities.
to recognize warning signs of abuse and neglect, how to respond safely and effectively and where to refer in the community to find help.
If the answer is ‘not yet’ then this is your starting point. Set a goal and a date to work toward to achieve the first goal.
Declare: by [date] we want our community to acknowledge elder abuse as a community priority. Working toward a date creates a focus for the goal.
Explore: To begin discussion with your local government, find out where elder abuse ‘fits’ with existing municipal policies/ programs/ committees. There may already be initiatives underway that can be expanded to include elder abuse such as Age Friendly Communities.
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD)– JUNE 15
As a step toward the goal, ask local politicians to support WEAAD this year:
For more information and ideas about WEAAD visit the CNPEA website
Other areas to focus local activity:
If yes, is elder abuse included? What is the proposed action?
ASK: How can any community consider itself Age-Friendly, Sustainable, Equitable… if it is not addressing elder abuse?
Read through the section on Goal 2 in the roadmap to understand the approach we are taking, what networks can do, and how governments need to share costs and align funding to achieve strong social return on the investments.
If you don’t have a network, start one. Find others in the community who will support the development of the network. Go to professionals who are working in the field and engage them. Seek out volunteers who want to contribute.
If you have a network but no, or not enough funding, start the process of engaging local elected officials in discussion about how to put funding in place to build a sustainable network that is pan-Canadian. The letter templates below can help.
Education can be a primary engagement activity for elder abuse prevention networks. The Government of Canada has made significant investments in a pan-Canadian public education campaign called It’s Not Right! Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults. (INR) The INR program has been piloted in every province and territory and is available in English and French.
Many provincial / territorial networks provide training and workshops on INR for local networks. See the INR website or check with your provincial/territorial network.