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Elderly face abuse

Shayal Devi
Thursday, June 19, 2014

THERE are elderly people in Fiji who still face physical and emotional abuse, says a report from the Fiji Council of Social Services.

It was compiled by the council for the Madrid International Plan for Action on Ageing Report 2011.

"Also, one in three older people around the world suffer some form of abuse," the report said.

During the half-day World Elder Abuse Awareness Day celebrations in Nadi earlier this week, it was highlighted that many elderly people suffer abuse in silence.

The report noted a research conducted by the Fiji Council of Social Services that stated that elderly people in Fiji went through physical, mental and emotional abuse and their rights were violated.

It said a UN Convention on the Rights of Older People would ensure this did not happen.

"While the rights of women, children, prisoners and people with disabilities are all protected through special international conventions, no such human rights convention exists for older people despite specific discrimination and human rights violation they face."

Fiji Council of Social Services officer-in-charge Neil Maharaj said the United Nations set up the Open Ended Working Group on Ageing in order to discuss how best to protect older people's rights.

"It is the only place where the rights of older people are discussed at a global level by national government representatives who have the power to bring about change.

"We call for policy makers to engage effectively in the UN Open Ended Working Group on Ageing meeting scheduled in end of July 2014."

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