World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2024 – June 15

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day - June 15 2024 1

The United Nations (UN) World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is annually observed across the globe on 15 June to raise awareness about the abuse, neglect, and exploitation faced by older persons, while promoting respect and dignity for older persons.

  • The 2024 theme of WEAAD is, “Spotlight on Older Persons in Emergencies.”

Note: The 2024 theme underscores the urgent need to protect and support older persons during crises and promotes a more inclusive and protective environment.


i.WEAAD represents a unified global voice against elder abuse, a serious human rights violation, and highlights the fundamental right of older adults to live free from fear and violence.

ii.WEAAD 2024 also emphasises the significance of education and training among emergency responders, caregivers, and the public about the challenges older persons face in emergencies.

2024 Events:

A virtual event on “Combating violence, abuse, and neglect of older persons during conflict situations,” was organised on 14 June 2024 at the UN Headquarters in New York, the United States of America (USA).

WEAAD 2024 Geneva Event:

i.A webinar on “Progress and priorities for ending abuse of older people during the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing” will be hosted on 17 June 2024 by the WHO, UNDESA, and INPEA in Geneva, Switzerland.

ii.The event will also mark the publication of an online interactive database of ‘promising interventions‘ to reduce and address the abuse of older people.

  • It is the 1st product of the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing’s Intervention Accelerator to Prevent Abuse of Older People (AOP-IA) project.


i.The observance of the WEAAD on 15 June, was initiated by the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse (INPEA) in 2006.

ii.Following the request by the INPEA, on 19 December 2011, the UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/66/127, proclaiming 15 June as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day.

iii.The 1st ever UN WEAAD was observed on 15 June 2012.

Definition of Elder Abuse:

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), elder abuse is “a single, or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust, which causes harm or distress to an older person.”

  • It can be physical, psychological, emotional, sexual, financial abuse, or neglect.

Future Projection:

i.With the global population of people aged 60+ expected to double by 2050, the number of elder abuse victims could reach 320 million, highlighting the urgent need for action.

ii.Between 2019 and 2030, the global population of individuals aged 60 and above will rise by 38%, reaching 1.4 billion.

  • This increase will be most significant in developing countries.

iii.Elder abuse is prevalent in both developing and developed nations but is often underreported. Prevalence rates range from 1% to 10% in some developed countries.

WHO’s 5 Priorities for Healthy Ageing:

i.On 15 June 2022 on the occasion of the WEAAD, the WHO and its partners published “Tackling Abuse of Older People: Five Priorities for the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing (2021–2030).”

ii.These priorities, developed through extensive consultation, are:

  • Combat Ageism is crucial as it significantly contributes to the lack of attention to elder abuse;
  • Generate more and better data to increase awareness of elder abuse;
  • Develop and scale up cost-effective measures to prevent abuse of older adults.
  • Making an investment case to emphasise the financial benefits of tackling elder abuse demonstrates its value.
  • Raise Funds as more resources are vital to address elder abuse effectively.

iii.The report was jointly published by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA), the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), and the UN Women with the support of the INPEA.

Note: On 14 December 2020, the UNGA proclaimed the UN Decade of Healthy Ageing (2021-2030).

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