Domestic Violence and Elder Abuse is Everybody’s Business: Working Together to Prevent Violence and Abuse Towards Older People
Older women make up the majority of those impacted on by elder abuse and domestic violence. They face discrimination based on age, gender, class, race, ethnicity, sexuality and disability, are vulnerable to poverty and homelessness and have difficulties accessing employment, health-care and aged care services. Older women are a marginalised majority. The OWN NSW has been working for 3 decades across the domestic violence and elder abuse sectors promoting the rights of older women, advocating for social inclusion, social justice and social change, as well as providing affordable and engaging programs, through OWN Wellness Centres, to enhance social connectedness and wellbeing. Our goal is to make domestic violence and elder abuse everybody’s business. This paper will examine some of OWN’s work: Older Women Speak Out (Mears, 2003), The Disappearing Age (OWN, 2009), It Could Be You; Female, Single, Older and Homeless (McFerron, 2010). It will conclude by examining the significant work being done by the OWN Wellness Centres in the prevention of violence against older women through enhancing health, well being and social connectedness.