It is estimated that one in six older people are victims of abuse. Thatâ€™s over 16% of our mothers, fathers, uncles, aunties, grandmothers, grandfathers, friends and neighbours.
The Hourglass mission is simple: end the harm, abuse and exploitation of older people in the UK.
We have nearly 30 years’ experience as Action on Elder Abuse and over that time our work has touched tens of thousands of people, it’s shaped government policy and amplified the issue in national press. That’s why Hourglass is so vital. As the UK’s only charity focused on the abuse and neglect of older people, we staff a free-to-call helpline. It’s an absolute lifeline for older men, women and their families suffering from the five forms of abuse: physical, psychological, financial, sexual or neglect. We recognise at Hourglass that the hard work is just beginning.
Around one million people over the age of 65 are victims of abuse each year in the UK. We believe it is woefully under-reported and that it demands parity with other forms of abuse in the social consciousness and in terms of funding. We need support and understanding of the issue.
With an ageing population, we need to turn the Hourglass for millions of people before it’s too late.
But how will Hourglass achieve this?
We are far more than just a helpline. We will collaborate with key stakeholders and other frontline organisations to nurture our safer ageing agenda. We also want to create programmes that change lives and ways of thinking – and we need your help to make this possible. This isn’t about growing old gracefully. Safer ageing is about creating environments and procedures so that older people are not put at risk of abuse or neglect. Just as crucially: it’s about empowering older people so they can, where suitable, live their lives independently and fully trusting those people around them.
We’re urging a change in laws: the criminal justice system must try harder to support the older people and make safer ageing possible. We will push for harder sanctions for those that abuse or neglect older people. We will also commission research to provide valuable data and raise the profile of our cause through the local and national press.
We’re pledging to raise £2 million by 2023, to help 10,000 victims of abuse or neglect, and to provide pro-bono legal support for at least 1,000 people. We can also proudly announce our Helpline is now a 24/7 service as of March 2022. Hourglass believe in safer ageing and stopping abuse for the elderly. For 30 years we’ve been at the frontline, but we’re just getting started.