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Home > Arhiva > 2012 > Numar: 4 > Forms of Elder Maltreatment

 Forms of Elder Maltreatment

  • Venera Margareta Bucur (West University of Timisoara, Social Assistance Department, tel: 0723215196 or 0722583145, Utvin 140 A, Timis, postal code 307382, Romania, E-mail:

Image depreciation of the elder leads to the erosion of his authority in the family and in the society environment. Because of the imbalance of power and authority in relation with persons in charge of care or that are trusted and because of unfavorable prejudices regarding the elder, that are getting acute, the dependent elderly person becomes more exposed to manifestations of violence than other people. Decrease of the elder’s autonomy results in the increase of the dependence of the caregiver. The elder’s dependence on the care person, with feelings of shame that impossible things can happen in the distant future some of them even from loved ones makes finding forms of maltreatment of elderly to be more difficult than other forms of maltreatment on other categories of victims. Because of the victim's lack of cooperation with specialists, development of methods of maltreatment becoming more diverse and dissimulated, makes elderly maltreatment that involve individual achievement of violence against the elderly to continue with forms in which we can talk about a collective perpetrator or superindividual / higher level. Diversification and concealing the forms of violence under the guise of normal behaviors requires transferring information in geriatric social work in the area of macrosocial. Informing the public about ill-treatment needs to be accompanied by a more interpersonal networking starting from school in the hope to break the transgenerational chain of abuse and an increased quality of life of elderly amid improving human relations in the whole society. Permanent training of professionals involved in assessment and intervention in cases of abuse must evolve with theoretical and intervention models and contain increasingly more information about methods and ways to prevent the phenomenon. Initial and continuous training of gerontoloical social workers should cover not only skills, but also educating the sensitivity to facilitate detection and evaluation of more insidious forms of abuse.

Keywords: abuse, neglect, exploitation, institutional, legal and political maltreatment