World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 15 June 2015

Elder Abuse Awareness Information Line in the Northern Territory

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 15 June 2015

COTA NT marked World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 15 June 2015 with its first event and campaign to raise community awareness of elder abuse or older persons’ abuse in the Northern Territory.

It partnered with Darwin Community Legal Service (DCLS) to promote its Elder Abuse Information Line launched in April 2015. The telephone help line a free, confidential and independent service for all Territorians.

Elder Abuse Presentation & Morning Tea

The presentation held at COTA NT’s Spillett House facilities was attended by community and COTA NT members and featured guest speakers:

  • Sally Sievers, Anti-Discrimination Commissioner
  • Gillian Brearley, Department of Health’s Psychogeriatric Service
  • Lorraine Gibbs, Darwin Community Legal Service (DCLS)
  • It was attended by the Shadow Minister for Seniors, Lauren Moss MLA.

We championed the designated colour of the awareness day, purple; provided information and literature including posters and flyers.

Seniors Voice

We also used our weekly Seniors Voice column published in June 2015 in the NT News to drive awareness of the issue.

Preventing elder abuse is everyone’s business

COTA NT 15/06/2015 – Seniors Voice with Graeme Bevis

From l to r: Sally Sievers Anti-Discrimination Commissioner, Lauren Moss MLA and Graeme Bevis, CEO COTA NT

Purple ribbons raise awareness of elder abuse

COTA NT organised a morning tea to support the 10th anniversary of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on Monday 15 June. Participants wore the colour purple and purple ribbons to show their support in raising awareness of elder abuse within our communities across the Territory.

We were joined by Anti-Discrimination Commissioner Sally Sievers, Gillian Brearley from the Department of Health, Lorraine Gibbs, Darwin Community Legal Service (DCLS) and Lauren Moss (Shadow Minister for Seniors). We were given an insight into what elder abuse is, how many elderly people suffered from abuse across the world and in Australia; and we discussed the importance of talking about issues, offering support and reaching resolutions for those affected.

It became apparent, that like many other states, the Territory has little or no data-led research to back calls for greater legislative powers or more services and funding for elder abuse issues. This is why COTA NT is keen to help support the promotion of Darwin Community Legal Service (DCLS)’s Elder Abuse Information Line. This has been running since April 2015 – it is a free, confidential and independent service for all Territorians. The number is 1800 037 072. Please note that although calls made to this number from mobile calls will be charged to the caller, DCLS will call people back.

We showed we cared by wearing the colour purple today and we will continue to work towards raising the profile of elder abuse specifically. One of our event participants pointed out that the heightened awareness of abuse towards animals and children over the last 30 years has helped bring these issues into the open enabling people to talk about them more freely, the first step to preventing and stopping abuse. It’s time to increase awareness of elder abuse to enable the community to talk about it, to prevent it, to stop it.

DCLS’s Elder Abuse Information Line – 1800 037 072

COTA NT – 8941 1004


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