Common Questions

I am worried about an older adult who may be being abused or neglected

Abuse and neglect of older adults, also known as elder abuse or senior abuse, means violence against seniors or mistreatment of seniors, including neglect of seniors who depend on others for care. Abuse or neglect of older adults takes many different forms: physical, sexual, emotional, and financial. Other forms are related to giving medication improperly or taking away rights (for example, to privacy, or to make treatment decisions).

Good starting points include:

  • Fact Sheets on Abuse of Older Adults, from Seniors First BC, provide basic information about the abuse of seniors. They cover psychological and emotional abuse, financial abuse or exploitation, physical or sexual abuse, medication abuse, and violation of civil/human rights and neglect/self neglect.
  • Help Starts Here: Information on Abuse and Neglect of Older Adults, from the provincial government, has information about what is abuse or mistreatment of seniors, what the law says, and steps to take.
  • LSLAP Manual: Victims, from the UBC Law Students Legal Advice Program, has information about abuse and neglect of seniors and others with disabilities.

Need more help?

  • Seniors First BC operates the Seniors Abuse & Information Line (SAIL), a toll-free telephone line for older adults and those who care about them, to talk to someone about situations where they feel they are being abused or mistreated, or to receive information about elder abuse prevention.
  • Call VictimLink BC at 1-800-563-0808 (toll-free). They provide information and referral services to all victims of crime.

See our related common questions:

Last reviewed November 2017
elder abuse, abuse and neglect of seniors, senior abuse