OUR VIEW PENINSULA: Tag, you’re it on elder abuse

Recognizing elder abuse is more complex than the province’s public relations plan to promote the issue on social media.

Recognizing and reporting elder abuse is a lot more complex than the province’s latest public relations plan to promote the issue on social media.

Asking people to use a hashtag to discuss elder abuse in B.C. will be about as effective as the #bringbackourgirls — an online community discussing the kidnapping of 230 Nigerian girls. And about as effective as the Kony 2012 online video about the leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army in Africa who has been indicted for war crimes.

Both of these social media-based efforts certainly did raise awareness. However, the Nigerian girls are still missing and Joseph Kony is still out there. Nice ideas, but as is the lament about online campaigns, they only go so far and our attention spans are so short, we move on to the next best thing.

Where an online campaign will have an impact on elder abuse issues in B.C. is in raising its profile. It’s altogether possible that more information will reach people who are genuinely interested in the issue and take definitive action.

That action will be ensuring people have a place to go when they witness or are victims of abuse, or people to talk to. As explained by B.C.’s new Seniors Advocate, Isobel Mackenzie, it’s a start in the wider dissemination of information — but people still need to know how to recognize elder abuse. That vital information might possibly find its way through the chaff of online comments and opinions.

While it is important to have an opinion on elder abuse, it’s also vital to be able to find resources and support for those who have been victimized. If that can be done in 140 characters or less, great.

If not, it’s a waste of time.

Like most issues that need serious help, resolving elder abuse will need people to put down the phone, turn off the laptop and talk to their neighbours to learn how they can have a real impact.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Father on trial for murder describes being ‘tackled’ and ‘stabbed’ in Oak Bay apartment

Oak Bay father takes stand in his defense for December 2017 deaths of young daughters

Province rejects criticism from Saanich councillor over McKenzie Interchange

Transportation ministry says project will ‘significantly lower’ greenhouse gas emissions

Community helps fund dreams through Moms and Mentors

West Shore society helps women face the challenges of motherhood

Traditional salmon designs brighten Salish Sea Lantern Festival

Children from ȽÁU,WEL,ṈEW̱ tribal school built salmon hats for festival on Sidney waterfront

New police force in Surrey must avoid VPD, RCMP errors made in Pickton case: Oppal

Boots are scheduled to be on the ground by spring 2021

POLL: Should there be a ban on gas-powered leaf blowers?

We’ve all heard them, and most likely cursed them under our breath.… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of Aug. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Striking Western Forest Products workers could lose benefits in September

Union, forest company at odds over Vancouver Island benefit payments as strike enters third month

Conan turns to the Property Brothers for tips on buying Greenland

Jonathan Scott suggests removing glaciers and mountains to bring in ‘more natural light’

Forests minister visits B.C. town rocked by multiple mill shutdowns

A third of Mackenzie turns out for rally, not much to cheer about

B.C. music teacher accused of sexual misconduct involving girls

Police believe other victims could be out there after the arrest of Lamar Victor Alviar

Most Read