Senior woman's hands in lap

Campaign to counter negative attitudes to ageing

Published: 30 June 2022

The Barwon Elder Abuse Primary Prevention Network, led by Barwon Community Legal Centre and in partnership with the City of Greater Geelong, have launched a new campaign aimed at challenging age discrimination, which is one of the key drivers of elder abuse.

The STREETFACE See Me, Respect Me campaign features large-scale posters of older people from the Geelong region installed at key venues around the region, including the Geelong Library and Heritage Centre and the Leisurelink Aquatic & Recreation Centre.

Barwon Community Legal Centre chief executive officer Bryanna Connell said the campaign is designed to counter negative attitudes around ageing which allows elder abuse to occur.

“We must take proactive positive steps to eradicate ageism and create a culture that does not discriminate against older Australians which allows elder abuse to exist.

If we want to stop elder abuse before it starts, we need to tackle ageism and see older people as whole people. That’s what we are doing with our STREETFACE campaign.

The Australian Institute of Family Studies found in a recent study that one in six older Australians had experienced a form of elder abuse in the past 12 months but that only one-third of those people had sought help.

“Often elder abuse goes unreported as older victims don’t know where to turn to for help or fear losing close family relationships if they take action to stop the abuse,” Ms Connell said.

“It’s critical that those who experience elder abuse know that services such as Barwon Community Legal Centre exist to help.”

To find out more about the campaign, click here.