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Experts enlisted to help stop elder abuse

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June 14, 2018

A new national body will give expert help to elderly people at risk of financial and physical abuse.

An alliance of experts from across the country is being assembled to help stamp out the scourge of elder abuse.

Peak groups from each of the states will partner with the federal government to promote the safety, dignity and independence of older Australians and to protect them from harm.

Attorney-General Christian Porter described the abuse, neglect and exploitation of older people as a tragedy, pledging to work with the states, territories and community partners to tackle it.

Mr Porter expects the new group to play a key role in the development of a national plan to combat elder abuse, which he announced in February.

Among its aims will be exploring options to provide older people, their families, carers, support staff and allied professionals with the information and training necessary to prevent elder abuse.

The Turnbull government is providing $500,000 to establish the group, which will be launched in Sydney on Thursday, ahead of World Elder Abuse Day on Friday.

Australia's population is rapidly ageing, with the proportion of the population aged over 65 due to soar from 15 per cent in 2014-15 to 23 per cent by 2055.

"We need to address the risk of abuse that faces people as they age," Mr Porter said.

State and federal attorneys general last week agreed to progress standardised power of attorney orders across the country to prevent impatient adult children from stealing their inheritance from vulnerable parents.

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