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Assembly Member calls for further action to protect those at risk of elder abuse

October 19, 2012 7:28 PM

Welsh Liberal Democrat Regional Assembly Member for South Wales West, Peter Black has signed up to Age Cymru's Rule Out Abuse campaign which is calling for a new law to make sure tackling elder abuse is treated with the priority it deserves.

Mr. Black said:

"Age Cymru say that Wales has the highest prevalence of elder abuse in the UK with a rate of 6%. Based on population estimates, this could equate to more than 6000 older people who are being abused in their own home in our region alone, and as many as 39000 in Wales as a whole.

"No one should have to endure abuse, and more can be done to make sure people are supported and protected against harm.

"I am delighted to hear that the Deputy Minister intends to place key legal duties on local authorities and others, such as those in the health service and the police to protect adults at risk in the upcoming Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Bill.

"However, I feel that the legislation should also include a duty to consider provision of independent advocacy support for adults at risk, and a right to request an independent advocate for an adult at risk as suggested by Age Cymru.

"Independent advocacy services play a vital role in supporting people who have been or are being abused by empowering them to express their views and exercise their rights. Adults at risk often have no one to support them to exercise their rights and to make informed choices. Independent advocacy can provide people with a stronger voice and real control.

"That is why I am supporting Age Cymru's Rule Out Abuse campaign."