Elder Rights WA launched to protect WA seniors’ rights
A new State-wide service to protect seniors' rights has commenced with the launch of Elder Rights Western Australia, run by Legal Aid WA.
Elder Rights WA will be a State-wide 'wraparound' service providing legal advice and support to older Western Australians experiencing elder abuse.
The State Government will provide funding for Legal Aid WA of $4 million over four years to establish and deliver Elder Rights WA.
The service model for Elder Rights WA has been developed by Legal Aid WA in partnership with the Department of Communities.
Elder Rights WA will build on Legal Aid WA's Seniors Rights and Advocacy Service, which provides legal advice and representation regarding elder abuse and other legal matters.
Elder Rights WA will provide legal assistance to older people experiencing all forms of elder abuse, and will safeguard and advocate for the rights of older people.
The service will utilise Legal Aid WA's State-wide InfoLine as a single-entry point and triage service.
As part of Elder Rights WA, Legal Aid WA's offices across the State, including Bunbury, Albany, Kalgoorlie, Geraldton, South Hedland, Broome and Kununurra, will provide legal advice and support for people experiencing elder abuse or seeking guidance on other legal matters.
A network of 14 'virtual offices' will also provide virtual face-to-face appointments with Legal Aid WA's civil lawyers working from other locations at Citizens Advice Bureaus across metropolitan Perth as well as the Peel region, Esperance, Karratha, Leonora, Fitzroy Crossing and Jurien Bay.
Legal Aid WA will also partner with Advocare to deliver information and community education in Albany, Bunbury, Busselton, Geraldton and Broome.
Legal Aid WA Director Graham Hill said, "The Elder Rights WA service will enhance our existing compassionate, client-centred advice and assistance for seniors who have been impacted by elder abuse.
"In the past two years, with an ageing population and greater awareness of elder abuse, Legal Aid WA has experienced an increased demand for our services and as a result has introduced our first social worker to the Seniors Rights and Advocacy Service to work alongside lawyers in a holistic approach.
"This funding [$4 million] will help facilitate more initiatives like this, along with extra resources to offer the best support possible."
4 April 2022.