The serious issue of elder abuse is being highlighted through the Purple Road, a community project encouraging people to contribute to a growing ‘road’ of crocheted flowers.
Currently measuring four metres, the Purple Road is one tool that is being used to open up discussion of elder abuse in Western Australian communities.
An Australian Institute of Family Studies report put abuse of older Australians at between two and 10 per cent annually, with the prevalence of neglect potentially higher.
The Purple Road was started by volunteers working on the Older People’s Peer Education Scheme (OPPES), a pilot program targeting 2,000 seniors across five local government areas.
The OPPES, a partnership between SCALES Community Legal Centre and the Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre, uses volunteers to provide peer education to individuals, seniors groups and seniors support services.
Through the OPPES pilot, volunteers aim to train others to prevent and reduce the incidence and severity of elder abuse. A comprehensive project kit will be developed so the program can be rolled out across the State.
Source: WA Government