National Committee for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (NCPEA) will host its First National Forum on Polyvictimization in Later Life on October 1, 2013 in St. Paul, Minnesota. The ongoing project aims to enhance professional knowledge and understanding of polyvictimization as a characteristic of elder abuse. Discussions will include the most promising solutions to this poorly understood problem.
NCPEA describes the following forms of elder abuse.
- Physical abuse is physical force that results in bodily injury, pain, or impairment. It includes assault, battery, and inappropriate restraint.
- Sexual abuse is non-consensual sexual contact of any kind with an older person.
- Domestic violence is an escalating pattern of violence by an intimate partner where the violence is used to exercise power and control.
- Psychological abuse is the willful infliction of mental or emotional anguish by threat, humiliation, or other verbal or nonverbal conduct.
- Financial abuse is the illegal or improper use of an older person's funds, property, or resources.
- Neglect is the failure of a caregiver to fulfill his or her care giving responsibilities. Self-neglect is failure to provide for one's own essential needs.
Multiple forms of elder abuse often occur together. A single perpetrator often engages in multiple forms of abuse. Multiple perpetrators abuse the same victim.
Polyvictimization is a complex phenomenon and a new term for the elder abuse field.
The Forum will include brief presentations and active workgroups exploring different dimensions of the issue. Discussions will be videotaped, with segments to be used in a virtual training series being produced as part of the project.
The Forum aims to arrive at a new framework that places elder abuse within the context of polyvictimization. It will also contribute a later life perspective to the ways that polyvictimization is typically considered.
Only high level elder abuse experts were invited. Attendance was limited to 150 participants. This Examiner has the privilege of attending.
The project is supported by a grant from the U.S Department of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime.