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Fears voluntary euthanasia laws will make older people more vulnerable to elder abuse

by Rebecca Turner, ABC News, 24 February 2018

Dr Blackwell says there is a generation of elderly patients who could be vulnerable because they don’t want to be a burden on their family.

“In our practice we see elder abuse occurring in residential aged care,” he said.

“So, yes, there is potential then that if voluntary euthanasia legislation comes into being that people could, if you like, be headed in that direction without really wanting to go there.”

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Dutch right-to-die group confirms elder abuse risk – but doesn’t seem to care

by Paul Russell, MercatorNet, 5 September 2017

Paul Russell is director of HOPE: preventing euthanasia & assisted suicide, which is based in Australia.

In recent years the discussion about ‘life ending actions’ has turned to assisted suicide for ‘completed life’; where a person over a certain age may declare that they wish to end their lives even though they may have no serious medical issues.

The Co-operative Last Will organisation is frank about the possible collateral damage: “The Cooperative Last Will and its members (3,500 people) point out the existence and functioning of the new drug. The club realizes that it involves the risks. An extreme consequence could be that children give the means to their old and wealthy parents because they want to claim their inheritance.”

Robbing oneself of life is suicide – elder abuse to death is murder. But who would ever know.

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Elder abuse on the rise in step with galloping property prices

by Graham Hill, The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 August 2017

Dr Graham Hill is the chairman of National Legal Aid, the peak body representing legal aid commissions in all states and territories.

Growing numbers of older people are being pressured by adult children to guarantee enormous loans.

The pressure on older people can be immense. Adult children sometimes deny access to grandchildren if an elderly parent does not agree to be a guarantor or provide funds for a home deposit.

The boom in property prices has resulted in a spike in the numbers of adult children taking over an elderly parent’s home and refusing to move out. At times, rising house prices result in an adult child persuading an elderly parent to sell up and buy a home with them.

Vulnerable parents are unable to free themselves of an abusive son or daughter who insists on living rent-free. 

This is also an increasing problem across the Tasman, where it was reported in New Zealand earlier this year that increasing numbers of elderly being abused.

Age Concern statistics show about 75 per cent of alleged abusers were family members – more than half the alleged abusers were adult children or grandchildren.

Family situations were often complex and elderly people relied on the care of the abuser, so instead of reporting the abuse, they put up with it, Clare said.

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