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Helpage Saint Lucia wants more public awareness for abuse and neglect of elderly

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Contact:  Adhara King


Friday 3 June 2011 Helpage Saint Lucia National Council of and for older people is highlighting its observance of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on June 15.


President of the Council, Francis Nelson, says the aim is to bring greater recognition to the mistreatment of older persons and to engage appropriate action.


The intent, Nelson says, is to give abuse and neglect of older persons a greater relevance that will sustain and move prevention efforts forward throughout the year and in years to come.


“We are observing an entire month as a matter of fact to recognise the importance of the prevention of elderly abuse. We have church services starting this Sunday, and every Sunday for the rest of the month. We intend to have several lectures with the schools.”


Helpage Saint Lucia, Francis says, is achieving its mandate through collaboration with various agencies, by a coordinating efforts to sensitize people.


“There is no doubt that it is very significant in terms of the incidence of abuse.  Cases of abuse may be under-reported, but we think the right mechanisms need to be set in motion to allow the agencies that are responsible, like the department of human services (ministry of health), ourselves-HELPAGE, and other agencies that can interface with older persons.”


Fourteen Club Sixties are active on island, Francis says, and they will be heavily involved in the initiative.


Mothers and father's groups, essential service groups, public servants, and the private sector, are also targeted to assist with spreading the message of appreciating and respecting those who paved the way for our development.

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