Laughing womanWhen AEA was formed back in 1993 no-one had heard of elder abuse. When asked, the Health Minister in Westminster at the time stated that there was no such problem in Britain. Today no politician in any of our nations would make such a statement. We have changed people’s awareness of the issue, though we still have a lot of work to do to ensure appropriate action is taken.

Since 1993 we have had a Parliamentary Health Select Committee Inquiry into elder abuse (2004), a Prevalence Study into the extent of elder abuse in our nation communities (2007), a Government review of adult safeguarding policy in England and Wales (2010 onward),  Adult Safeguarding clauses in the English Care Act 2014, substantial influence over the development of the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014, five BBC programmes on elder abuse (2003), Panorama undercover reporting (various), and the engagement of other organisations on aspects of the issue. As we develop our work in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland we will seek to replicate these successes. We now have four advisory groups, one each supporting our staff in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland

More recently we have turned our attention to the failings of the criminal justice system and successfully intervened in a Hull case where, despite video evidence, the local Safeguarding Board and the police had decided against prosecution. Our criminalisation campaign builds on this work.

Perhaps more importantly, our helpline has assisted thousands of older people, their families and friends since it was launched back in 1993. Between that time and March 2017 we have provided support to over 90,000 people.  No other organisation in these nations has assisted so many people on the issue of elder abuse.