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Written Statement - Publication of ‘Information and Guidance on Domestic Abuse: Safeguarding Older People in Wales’

Carl Sargeant, Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Children

Violence against women, domestic abuse and sexual violence are pervasive, harmful issues which can affect any member of our communities. The experience can be even more damaging to victims, where it is experienced alongside other complex needs or vulnerabilities.

I am pleased to announce the publication of ‘Information and Guidance on Domestic Abuse: Safeguarding Older People in Wales’ on the Welsh Government website. The document, which was created in partnership with the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales, will enable professionals within Welsh public services to work more effectively with older people of all genders who are experiencing or who have experienced domestic abuse.

On average, older victims experience domestic abuse for twice as long as those aged under 61, yet they are underrepresented in our specialist services.  This guidance has been written to not only raise awareness of this issue but to improve recognition and understanding of the context in which abuse of older people takes place and to offer practical advice how to offer effective services to older people.

The Welsh Government works closely with the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales and her office; they play a vital role in promoting services for older people in Wales. In 2017/18, the Welsh Government provided £1.5 million to the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales’ office to enable it to provide an independent voice and champion for older people across Wales.

We are committed to reducing incidents of violence against women, domestic abuse and sexual violence, and partnership working remains fundamental to that aim. I am grateful to the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales and the Steering Group who contributed their expertise to assist with the drafting of the Guidance, for their commitment and support.

The Guidance is available for download from the Welsh Government website:

http://gov.wales/topics/people-and-communities/communities/safety/domesticabuse/publications/?lang=en