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World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

June 12, 2009
Reinbeck Courier

(Des Moines, IA) Today Iowa Department on Aging (IDA) Director John McCalley reminded Iowans that June 15 will mark the fourth World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) - a day which raises awareness about violence against older adults in all its forms.

"With a view towards preventing violence and addressing it when it happens, we are asking all Iowans to stay alert to the possible signs of abuse of our older citizens, and to report it if they suspect that abuse is occurring," Director McCalley stated.

Violence against older adults can be actions that harm an older person or jeopardize the person's health or welfare. There are different forms or types of violence that include: physical, psychological, (emotional or verbal), financial, sexual, neglect, and violation of rights.

Physical violence can involve violence or rough treatment, even if no injury (pushing, hitting, throwing objects). It can include a threat of physical force, inappropriate use of medications or restraints.

Psychological (emotional or verbal) violence includes name calling, intimidation, threats, yelling, ignoring, and social isolation.

Financial abuse can include pressuring for money or property; illegally or improperly using a person's money, assets, or property.

Sexual violence can involve sexual contact with an older adult without that person's consent or unwelcome sexual comments or jokes, leering.

Neglect can be physical, emotional or financial and refers to situations where a person has a responsibility to provide care or assistance to an older adult but does not.

But there is help available. To report dependent adult abuse call 1-800-362-2178.

Plan While You Can sessions, which will provide education related planning in the event of incapacity, will be held in different parts of the state on June 15th to coincide with World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Assistance in completing powers of attorney and living wills will be available. For more information on attending a Plan While You Can session near you, call 1-800-532-3213 or log onto our website at

The Mission of the Iowa Department on Aging (IDA) is to provide advocacy, educational, and prevention services to help Iowans remain independent as they age. IDA provides over $30 million in services through a network of 13 Area Agencies on Aging across the state.

For more information on the Iowa Department on Aging (IDA), visit To locate resources for older adults and people with disabilities, visit .



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