A conference taking place in Dublin today to highlight the problem of elder abuse has heard criticism of the Government for failing to implement measures to protect vulnerable older people.
Professor Des O'Neill of Trinity College Dublin, the chairman of the Government’s Elder Abuse National Implementation Group, praised the HSE and the Department of Health and Children for steps taken to combat the problem, but said: "There has been a failure by the rest of Government, in particular the Department of Finance and the financial sector, to step up to the plate".
The conference, organised by Age Action and the Social Policy and Ageing Research Centre, Trinity College, was opened by the Minister for Older People, Aine Brady.
Minister Brady commended organisers for providing a forum for people to consider society’s collective responsibility to address elder abuse.
The minister reiterated the Government’s commitment to tackle elder abuse and said the current policy framework is under review.
Speakers at today's conference in Harold's Cross included leading Irish and British experts on elder abuse.
Age Action chief executive Robin Webster said there was a lack of rights for the disadvantaged and older people.
“In particular, we need to give more attention to preventing institutional abuse,” he said.
“For that, we need to promote and protect whistle blowers, by providing training, a help line and legal protection.”