Older survivors of domestic violence more at risk of abuse

Article published 24 March 2021

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A recently published research study has found that women who survive domestic violence are more at risk of experiencing abuse in later life.

It is estimated that around one in three women will experience intimate partner violence, that is violence within an intimate relationship which is physical, sexual, and/or emotional.

Women make up the overwhelming majority of victims of intimate partner violence which can have major consequences after the violence stops, such as illness and injury, infectious disease and disability. These consequences can lead to increased frailty and chronic illness in women as they age.

The ongoing physical and emotional impacts of intimate partner violence mean that older survivors are often more frail and financially dependent on others, two well known risk factors for a person being abused when they are older.

The lead author of the study, Dr Monica Cations, told The Senior “Both domestic violence and aged care services need to be aware of the ongoing vulnerability of survivors. Elder abuse prevention efforts can be targeted to help keep domestic violence survivors safe”.

If you are experiencing or at risk of domestic violence call the 24-hour national sexual assault, family and domestic violence counselling line on 1800 737 732.

If you are experiencing or suspect someone you know is experiencing elder abuse call the NSW Ageing and Disability Abuse Helpline on 1800 628 221.

If you are in immediate danger, call 000 for police and ambulance help.

For more information please email our media contact at media@cpsa.org.au

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