Can Elder Abuse Occur in a Retirement Village? The short answer is ‘yes’. However, it is more useful to define Elder Abuse, and outline some possible scenarios for retirement villages. Residents place a great deal of trust in their village managers, their staff and their scheme operators. Unfortunately, this trust can be abused.
ARQRV has been concerned with this area for a long time and has written many articles fully defining what “elder abuse” is and what you can do about it. If at any time you feel uncomfortable with what the manager or scheme operator is saying to you then it is likely that you are being abused. There is a substantial section about “ELDER ABUSE” in the Members Area.
“Elder Abuse is any act within a relationship of trust which harms an older person. It includes physical, verbal, financial and emotional abuse, as well as neglect.”
In a retirement village the Elder Abuse can be so subtle the resident is unaware of the abuse. Only when residents read or are informed about the behaviours that constitute Elder Abuse do they realize they are victims.
Overt or blatant Elder Abuse can happen because village managers, their staff, and the scheme operator know they have the power to make residents’ lives in the village intolerable by bullying or intimidating behaviours if one or more residents have the audacity to question their actions.
They (village managers etc.) rely on the residents (usually elderly widows) not knowing their rights, and being too frightened to take any action.
- Complaints about increased charges can result in the resident being threatened with eviction or suffering verbal insults
- Residents critical of village management may find their requests for repairs etc. are mislaid or delayed for months
- Residents who have suffered Elder Abuse and wish to leave the village may find that their unit becomes extremely difficult to sell
The RVAct does not mention Elder Abuse so residents seeking help should phone the Elder Abuse Helpline 1300 651 192 for free and confidential advice. If you require more information – ‘CLICK HERE’