AgeSmart Blog

Stand Up for Our Elders
by Joy Paeth | June 14, 2024

As we mark World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15, it's a crucial moment to reflect on our collective responsibility to protect and support the older generation. Launched in 2006 by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization, this day unites the global community in opposition to elder abuse in all its forms. Recognized by the United Nations General Assembly, WEAAD shines a light on the cultural, social, economic, and demographic challenges that contribute to elder abuse—an often overlooked and underreported issue.

Elder abuse remains one of the least investigated types of violence, frequently absent from national action plans. This gap in attention underscores the importance of initiatives like WEAAD, which aim to foster a better understanding of the abuse older individuals endure. In Illinois, we can take action by reporting abuse, neglect, or exploitation of adults aged 60 or older, or adults with disabilities aged 18-59, by calling the Illinois Department on Aging’s 24-hour adult protective services hotline at 1-866-800-1409.