Research indicates that the most commonly reported form of abuse of older people in Australia is financial abuse and the majority of perpetrators are family members. The number of people aged 65 years and over in Australia is growing rapidly and the challenges of aging often require support and assistance from family members, so it is important to develop strategies to prevent this form of abuse. This article analyses data from two national online surveys that examined this issue. The first, conducted in 2009, explored service providers' (n=214) knowledge and understandings of financial abuse of older people. The second, conducted in 2010, investigated older people's and their family members' (n=113) views and experiences of financial abuse. In our sample, service providers' knowledge of risk factors for financial abuse of older people mirrored the experiences of older people and their family members in Australia and also confirmed factors identified in the literature. However, our findings also showed that many older people were not mindful of the potential risks to their financial wellbeing, particularly when and if they experience diminished capacity. Therefore, service providers may find it difficult to engage them in preventative strategies.
- Elder abuse
- Family Interventions