At the question period, one attendee passionately interjected about what she saw as the Ontario government’s lack of response to diversity in the province’s capital. The speaker told her that there was one multicultural Regional Elder Abuse Coordinator. Yes, only one.
Next, a gentleman was angry and had a heavy accent, but the words “action” and “results” were quite clear. As was the question, “When?”. He urged the conference speakers to pledge to get concrete results and then to use next year’s conference to evaluate whether or not they had achieved them.
In the end, the Conference made clear that elder abuse is serious. It is a violation of human rights. The Conference raised questions of evaluation, cultural sensitivity, and whether or not half a million could be better spent and certainly much needs to be done. Perhaps the time for action is not World Elder Abuse Awareness Day; it is what is referred to colloquially as “everyday” or “now”.
Keywords: elder, abuse