Sadly, elder abuse has become an epidemic just like some of the serious diseases around the world have become. That is why elder abuse awareness day is such a great idea. It takes place every year on June 15th. Elder abuse has grown epidemically in numbers. Every year, an estimated five million older adults are abused, neglected, or exploited. They also lose about $2.6 million every year by being financially exploited that they could use to pay for their living expenses like housing, food, medical care, and legal assistance if needed. This type of abuse happens in every demographic and happens to people’s family members and their neighbors as well. What is really sad is that only about one in five of these crimes is detected. For these reasons, World Elder Abuse Awareness Day was created in the year 2006.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) was launched on June 15, 2006, by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse and the World Health Organization at the United Nations (UN). The goal of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is to give communities across the globe the opportunity to promote a better understanding of abuse and neglect of elderly people by raising awareness of the cultural, social, economic, and demographic processes that have an impact on elder abuse and neglect. The Elder Abuse Awareness Day is also held in support of the United Nations International Plan of Action acknowledging the significance of elder abuse and neglect as a public health and human rights issue. Observing World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is a call-to-action for individual people, organizations, and communities to raise awareness about elderly abuse, neglect, and exploitation. There are many things that individual people and/or organizations can do to spread awareness of Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

People and businesses like senior citizen centers, long-term care homes, retirement homes, and lawyers (like an accident attorney or injury attorney) can do things and host events to spread the awareness of Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Some of the things that they can is wear purple, have a community walk, create or join a local group or network, and host a presentation, lecture, or debate. They also can host a public awareness activity that includes politicians, seniors, local programs, survivors of abuse and others or a conference or training focused on elder abuse awareness and available community resources. Others things they can do are to get local politicians to declare June 15th as Elder Abuse Awareness Day, plant trees, host a high tea, and educate the press about this day. Some other things they can do is create a public service announcement on a local radio or television station, be a guest on a radio show about elder abuse, or use a website, blog, or email signature to spread awareness of elder abuse and Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

The more the knowledge of Elder Abuse Awareness Day gets spread around to the public and businesses and individual caregivers that care for the elderly on a daily basis, the less the epidemic of elder abuse and neglect will hopefully be spread around. The elderly loved us and raised us when we were young and continue to do so. They deserve to get that love back and not be physically and/or emotionally abused, neglected, financially exploited and mistreated. Hopefully, World Elder Abuse Awareness Day will get the knowledge and the resources out to the whole world so, one day the one in five current statistics of elder abuse will be totally and permanently non-existent.