Taking action to combat elder abuse in all its forms
GATINEAU, QC, June 15, 2014 /CNW/ - The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister
of State (Seniors), today joined communities across Canada and the
globe in recognizing World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD).
The World Health Organization and the International Network for the
Prevention of Elder Abuse launched WEAAD in 2006 to draw attention to
the abuse and neglect that older adults can experience and to provide
help in preventing it. The United Nations has also observed the date
The Government of Canada has made combatting elder abuse a priority and
supports a range of measures to help protect seniors from all forms of
elder abuse, including neglect. These include awareness activities and
New Horizons for Seniors Program elder abuse awareness projects. The
Government has also introduced new legislation, including the Protecting Canada's Seniors Act, which came into force in January 2013 and helps ensure consistently
tough penalties for those who take advantage of elderly Canadians.
Visit seniors.gc.ca for access to tools and resources to help detect and prevent elder
Economic Action Plan 2014 supports the implementation of the Canadian
Victims Bill of Rights, which was announced on April 3, 2014. The
proposed legislation, Bill C-32, will give victims of crime, including
seniors, clear rights and a stronger voice at the federal level in the
criminal justice and corrections system.
A brochure on powers of attorney and joint bank accounts was released in
November 2013 by the Federal/Provincial/Territorial Ministers
Responsible for Seniors Forum to inform seniors about the risks,
benefits and possible unintended consequences of opening a joint bank
account or granting someone a power of attorney.
In January 2013, the Protecting Canada's Seniors Act came into force, helping to ensure consistently tough penalties for
those who take advantage of elderly Canadians.
"On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the Government of Canada is
encouraging communities across the country to help raise awareness of
this serious issue and inform seniors on ways to protect themselves.
Our government is committed to helping preserve the well-being and
security of Canadian seniors, and it continues to introduce new
legislation and initiatives to combat elder abuse in all its forms."
- The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors)
Protecting Seniors Act
Digital Privacy Act
Canadian Victims Bill of Rights
Powers of Attorney (for financial matters and property) and Joint Bank
The Government of Canada hosts a website, seniors.gc.ca, which provides seniors, family members and caregivers with tools,
information and resources to help prevent and detect elder abuse.
Protecting Canada's Seniors Act
The Protecting Canada's Seniors Act, which came into force in January 2013, better protects seniors by
ensuring tougher sentences for those who take advantage of older
Canadians. Under the amendments to the Criminal Code, evidence that an offence had a significant impact on the victims due
to their age—and other personal circumstances such as their health or
financial situation—will now be considered an aggravating factor for
Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act
The Government of Canada recently introduced Bill S-4, the Digital
Privacy Act, which amends the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA). PIPEDA sets the rules private-sector organizations must follow
when collecting, using or disclosing personal information in the course
of commercial activity.
The new legislation would allow banks and other organizations to notify
authorities or a client's next of kin if they suspect that an older
client is the victim of financial abuse. Officials at Industry Canada,
with the support of Employment and Social Development Canada, will work
with the Privacy Commissioner of Canada to provide guidance to banks
and other affected organizations about factors to be considered in
using their discretion in this area and about related best practices.
Canadian Victims Bill of Rights
The Government of Canada recently announced the introduction of
legislation, Bill C-32, to create a Canadian Victims Bill of Rights
that would transform the criminal justice system by creating, at the
federal level, clear rights for victims of crime—a first in Canadian
The Canadian Victims Bill of Rights would transform the role of victims
of crime in the criminal justice system by creating statutory rights
for them. For the first time in Canadian history, criminal law
provisions would be framed clearly to include rights for victims of
New Horizons for Seniors Program
The New Horizons for Seniors Program supports projects led or inspired
by seniors who want to make a difference in the lives of others and in
their communities. Since 2006, the New Horizons for Seniors Program has
funded more than 13,000 projects in hundreds of communities across
The Program provides support for networking, developing and delivering
education and awareness activities. It also creates tools and resources
to help seniors protect themselves from elder abuse, including fraud
and financial abuse.
SOURCE: Employment and Social Development Canada
For further information:
Office of the Minister of State (Seniors)
Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada
Follow us on Twitter