IRVINE, Calif., June 13, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Elder abuse awareness advocates from the University of California, Irvine will launch a national campaign highlighting the crisis of abuse, neglect and exploitation June 14 at a special White House event.
Ageless Alliance: United Against Elder Abuse is a social justice movement connecting all generations to identify, prevent and eliminate abuse and neglect of the most vulnerable adults in society, said Mary Twomey, co-director of the National Center on Elder Abuse and the Center of Excellence on Elder Abuse & Neglect at University of California, Irvine.
"Elder abuse isn't just a problem that affects older Americans; it affects all of us," she said. "That's why it takes all of us to do something about it: kids, teens, grandparents and everyone in between. Ageless Alliance is our rallying cry to unite generations and create positive change."
The historic daylong symposium at the White House recognizes the seventh annual World Elder Abuse Awareness Day and brings together public and private partners with key roles in addressing the abuse, neglect and financial exploitation of America's seniors. The day's four sessions will be webcast live starting at 9 a.m. EDT on the White House website (http://www.whitehouse.gov/live) and will include interactive question-and-answer sessions on Twitter and Facebook. Speakers from the federal government and national banking institutions as well as leading elder abuse experts from around the country will be featured.
The White House Office of Public Engagement –with the Department of Health & Human Services' Administration for Community Living, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Department of Justice – is hosting the symposium.
Twomey said the White House event adds to a growing recognition of the problem of elder abuse in America. Last year, actor Mickey Rooney detailed his experience as an elder abuse victim before the Senate's Special Committee on Aging and a national TV audience. In addition, Marie-Therese Connolly, director of Life Long Justice, was awarded a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant" for her work to put a national spotlight on elder abuse. With more than 70 million baby boomers approaching retirement age, it becomes more critical to confront the issue.
Elder abuse includes intentional, unintentional and neglectful acts by family, caregivers or others and comes in many forms, including sexual, physical and emotional abuse; neglect; and financial exploitation. About 5 million older Americans are abused each year, with an estimated 84 percent of cases going unreported. By providing tools and resources to help those currently suffering, Ageless Alliance empowers people to take action.
For more information about Ageless Alliance or how to get involved, visit www.agelessalliance.org.
About the National Center on Elder Abuse: The U.S. Administration on Aging designated the Center of Excellence on Elder Abuse & Neglect at the University of California, Irvine as the National Center on Elder Abuse in September 2011. Led by Dr. Laura Mosqueda and Mary Twomey, M.S.W., the center is a clearinghouse for practical information supporting federal, state and local efforts to prevent, identify and effectively respond to elder abuse, neglect and exploitation. It is the national authority on elder abuse in the U.S.
About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Led by Chancellor Michael Drake since 2005, UCI is among the most dynamic campuses in the University of California system, with nearly 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students, 1,100 faculty and 9,000 staff. Orange County's second-largest employer, UCI contributes an annual economic impact of $4 billion. For more UCI news, visit www.today.uci.edu.
SOURCE University of California, Irvine Medical Center