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Round table "The right to old age – violence against older persons"


On 1 October, the International Day of Older Persons, a representative of the Red Cross of Serbia took part in a round table "The right to old age – violence against older persons" organised by the Provincial Protector of Citizens. The round table was attended by experts in the field of rights of older persons, representatives of the Ministry of Interior, Police Directorates from the territory of Autonomous Province Vojvodina, representatives of the Centres for Social Work, Higher Public Prosecutor's Office in Novi Sad, Provincial Institute for Social Protection, Red Cross – representatives of local branches from the Vojvodina territory and nursing homes.

According to the data obtained by the Provincial Protector of Citizens – Ombudsman, in his research, the curve of violence against older persons has increased significantly from 2018 until today. One of the obtained analyses indicates that the most prevalent form is psychological violence against older persons, while according to the analysis of the monitoring of electronic media reporting, it was determined that the media reported the most on physical violence. Older women are targeted by violence in a much higher percentage than older men.

Natasa Todorovic from the Red Cross of Serbia, who was invited as an expert, spoke about the types, prevalence and risk of violence against older persons. An important part of her intervention was related to the problem of why older women do not report violence and what the obstacles are that older women face when they want to exercise their rights, primarily security and life without violence. It should not be forgotten that violence against older persons is a public health problem, a problem of gender equality and human rights violations. And the greatest risks of violence are functional dependence, age, social isolation, burden of care and social norms.