Safer ageing charity, Hourglass, has revealed that 1 in 5 over-65s in the UK has experienced abuse, with almost 2.7 million victims thought to be affected across the country.
The charity issued the stark statistics as part of a warning of winter isolation and rising elder abuse in the run-up to Christmas.
Earlier this year the charity commissioned research into the general public’s knowledge and understanding of the abuse of older people. Growing old in the UK 2020 found that of over 2,500 adults:
· 22% people either had personal experience of abuse as an older person (aged 65+) or knew an older person who had been abused
· 53% of people in the UK felt that the abuse and neglect of older people had increased as a result of the lockdown
· 30% didn’t view ‘pushing, hitting, or beating an older person’ as abuse
· 32% didn’t see ‘taking precious items from an older relative’s home without asking’ as abuse
Victims’ Commissioner for England and Wales, Dame Vera Baird QC said: “These latest findings by Hourglass are both concerning and unacceptable. The abuse of older people is a significant problem and one that regrettably slips under the radar all too often. I, therefore, welcome this spotlight on the issue of elderly abuse and thank Hourglass for their important work in ending the harm, abuse and exploitation of older people in the UK.”
Hourglass: Winter elder abuse warning