Considering 'elder abuse' and sexual assault

Author(s)Quadara, Antonia
Title Considering 'elder abuse' and sexual assault
Source ACSSA Newsletter No15, September 2007
Date 2007
Document type Research paper
Coverage Australia
Summary This article examines the issue of sexual assault for older women, and considers how violence against older women, in particular sexual assault, is connected to gendered violence experienced over the lifespan. The author examines research on these issues, including the prevalence and nature of sexual assault against older women. The author notes that if a woman experiences sexual assault over 65 it is viewed as an issue of age rather than gender but it is important for service providers, clinicians and researchers to consider the prevalence of sexual assault over the lifespan. It is suggested that the term 'elder abuse' can truncate the recognition that rape of older women is part of a continuum of violence over the lifespan. Key issues for older women who are victims of sexual assault are identified, including the difficulties of accessing appropriate services and health impacts of violence over the lifespan.
Keywords Elderly; sexual assault; aged care; reporting mechanisms; older women; nursing home.
Topic Elderly; Service delivery