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Edlery Abuse and Neglect

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Submitted By KBarnes
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Elderly Abuse and Neglect

Kenneth Barnes

Herzing University Online
March 30, 20 According to “Merriam-Webster” sacrosanct is defined as most sacred inviolable: secure from assault or trespass, treated as holy: immune from criticism or violation. This is how we viewed our elderly in the past (particularly the eldest male) as patriarchs of the family these are the individuals that guided, shaped and molded our cultural and ethical knowledge. “Growing awareness of family violence, however, has shown this view to be faulty, first with the "discovery" of child neglect and abuse in the 1960s, followed by spouse abuse in the early 1970s, and elder neglect and abuse in the mid-1970s” (Hudson,2002). Fast forward to present day we find that these individuals are regarded as obsolete relics and are treated as such. An article in the Encyclopedia of Aging points out that elderly abuse has been in existence since the beginning of human history. Although violence varies from society to society and culture to culture the manner in which the elderly are subjected to this violence depends on that society or culture. In some cultures older adults are respected and honored while in others they are viewed as a burden. The latter lends itself to the abuse of the elderly. Early examples of elder neglect and abuse include adult sons killing their aged parents in Teutonic societies and Native American tribes abandoning their elders when they can no longer travel (Sumner). The article goes on to make distinctions between elderly abuse and neglect. In the mid-seventies to early eighties interest in examining the problem of elderly mistreatment prompted the House Committee on Aging to hold a series of hearings around the country. An initial finding was that elderly mistreatment was a domestic issue that occurred within the family. Later the studies reveal the different...

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