Office of the Seniors’ Advocate
June 15, 2018

June 15 is World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

In 2002, the United Nations identified the mistreatment of older adults as a violation of internationally recognized human rights. In 2006 the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse launched the first World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15.

The abuse and neglect of older adults is a global problem; it can occur anywhere and can happen to anyone. Elder abuse affects all members of society on one level or another.

It is difficult to know exactly how many older adults are victims of violence due to under-reporting, confusion about the definition of violence and a general lack of awareness about the issue. However, research estimates that as many as 1 in 10 older adults are abused each year. Often that abuser is someone they know and trust.

Violence against older persons can take many forms, including physical, psychological, emotional, verbal, sexual, financial, neglect, spiritual/religious and cultural.

“Stopping the abuse of older adults is the responsibility of each and every one of us. By raising awareness, we focus attention. Recognizing June 15 as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day means that on this day, every year, the world pays special attention to the seriousness of this issue.”
Dr. Suzanne Brake
Seniors Advocate
Newfoundland and Labrador

Elder abuse will be successfully prevented when we develop a culture of “no tolerance”; a society where all individuals stand together against all forms of elder abuse.

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Media contact
Dr. Suzanne Brake
Seniors’ Advocate
(709) 729-6603     1-833-729-6603
Fax: (709) 729-6630 external link


Office of the Seniors’ Advocate

The Office of the Seniors’ Advocate is an Independent Statutory Office of the House of Assembly of Newfoundland and Labrador.

The Office works with seniors, service providers and others to identify, review, and analyze systemic issues impacting large numbers of seniors; and make recommendations respecting changes to improve seniors’ services.

On November 7, 2017, Dr. Suzanne Brake was appointed as Newfoundland and Labrador’s first Seniors’ Advocate.

A senior is defined in this act as an individual who is 65 years or older; or less than 65 years and receives seniors services.

Individual concerns are referred to either the Office for the Citizens’ Representative which accepts complaints from individual adults of all ages, or SeniorsNL which provides a province-wide information and referral system.

Dr. Brake encourages seniors to contact the Office of the Seniors’ Advocate and share with her their issues and ideas for solutions which impact seniors in our province. Seniors can call, email or submit their concerns via an on-line form at: external link

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
For more information on International, Canadian and Newfoundland and Labrador activities in support of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, please visit:

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