Gordon Workshop Puts Spotlight on Seniors' Rights

Wednesday, 09 May 2018

Older people in the Ku-ring-gai and Davidson Electorates will be empowered to recognise and speak up about elder abuse following a workshop to be held in Gordon on Wednesday, 16 May, to mark the upcoming 2018 Law Week.

Member for Ku-ring-gai, Alister Henskens SC MP, and Member for Davidson, Jonathan O’Dea MP, today announced Legal Aid NSW and the Seniors Rights Service have partnered with local experts to deliver the workshop.

“This important event will bust myths, and start a conversation between older people and their loved ones,” Mr Henskens said.

Mr O’Dea added: “It’s crucial that older people understand how the law can work to protect them, and that they know where to get help if things go wrong.”

Participants will view a screening of the film Piano Forte, which explores legal issues such as wills, enduring powers of attorney and elder abuse. After the film local experts from Legal Aid NSW, the Seniors Rights Service and the NSW Elder Abuse Helpline and Resource Unit will lead an audience discussion.

Minister for Ageing Tanya Davies said financial abuse is one of the most prevalent forms of elder abuse and family members are sadly often the perpetrators. 

“A common scenario might involve an older person being pressured to ‘go guarantor’ on a home loan to help a child or grandchild get a foothold on the property ladder. In the worst cases, victims are fleeced of their savings by a relative or carer,” Mrs Davies said.

Attorney General Mark Speakman said, “All too often, families are left making tough decisions that could have been made easier through early planning. Simple things like writing a will and choosing someone you trust to make decisions for you if you need them to, can offer real peace of mind.”

The free workshop Piano Forte – Legal Issues for Older People will take place at Gordon Library on Wednesday, 16 May, from 10.30am to 12pm. Places will be strictly limited – call the Library on (02) 9424 0120 to secure yours.

For information on National Law Week 14-20 May, visit www.lawweek.com.au.  Anyone who experiences or suspects elder abuse should call the NSW Government’s NSW Elder Abuse Helpline and Resource Unit on 1800 628 221 or visit www.elderabusehelpline.com.au.