I had promised myself that I wasn’t going to post anymore today, and stay off the computer.
But the New York Times has discovered elder abuse. When I was practicing social work some cases almost literally fell into my hands. When doing post-grad training I gave the presentations on abuse to other social workers because so few had any practical experience.
It was depressing; made more depressing by the lack of organizations that could or would help. It wasn’t considered important. No matter what they say, old people have been treated as expendable. Newt Gingrich and his cronies made sure that money allocated to social service agencies was scarce. When they had to prioritize, children took first priority.
Yes, children are important, but so are all people.
Social Work organizations like the one mentioned here are well-intentioned but the social workers are overworked, and not considered important. Just the words “social worker” are enough to make some people laugh.
Rather than stir the pot or find new solutions, many social work agencies want to continue the status quo. This saddens me.
The women in this article are comparatively young–71 and 75–actually shockingly young. Imagine being abused or neglected for 20 or more years when you’re getting older by the second.
I feel strongly about many issues but elder abuse is among the top five because the people are too shamed or unable to speak for themselves.