The conditions created by COVID-19 have increased the risk faced by older women and men of violence, abuse, and neglect.
This briefing focuses on the experience of older people in Malawi, Moldova and Pakistan. In their own words, those who are at risk of – or have experienced – violence, abuse, and neglect describe the impact the pandemic is having on their lives.
It delivers findings and recommendations designed to ensure that action to prevent and respond to violence is fully inclusive of older people, enabling them to participate meaningfully as agents of change in efforts to ‘build back better’.
The pandemic, and government measures to prevent its spread, created new – and exacerbated existing – risks for older people in relation to violence, abuse, and neglect. And support services have failed to adequately protect their rights.
Despite the recognised potential of government measures to worsen the incidence of violence and abuse against older people, not enough is being done to prevent it or provide support when it does happen.
This HelpAge research reviewed evidence from Africa, Eurasia and the Middle East, and interviewed representatives from frontline support services and government service providers. However, significant gaps in the collection, analysis, and reporting of data on violence, abuse, and neglect of older people contribute to the chronic invisibility of older people. These gaps hamper more effective prevention and response, and inhibit awareness of the scale of this threat to older people.
A report on the impact of COVID-19 on Older People: Bearing the Brunt