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The Perfect Storm: the evolution of Australia's elder abuse crisis

This panel will discuss the factors that have converged to create a ‘perfect storm’ in the form of widespread elder abuse in Australia.

With an ageing population, the distribution of wealth is becoming more concentrated in the hands of older people, while housing affordability stories dominate the news. At the same time, ageism prevails and substance misuse, family breakdown and insecure employment create pressure for younger generations.

These factors, combined with inadequate legal and policy instruments and the lack of a national plan have led to a crisis point for elder abuse.

Join our experts as they reflect on the context that has brought us here and what we can do as a community at large to respond.

This event will be chaired by Radio National journalist Antony Funnell.

This event is proudly presented in partnership with Queensland University of Technology Law School.

Refreshments will be provided following the panel discussion.

Tweet about this event using the hashtag #CaxtonJIFS.

The Justice in Focus Series is a set of regular public forums that enrich public debate on topics of local and national importance. Each forum features a panel of leading thinkers representing a range of socio-legal views on the topic.

Caxton Legal Centre partners with the law schools at Griffith University, Queensland University of Technology and The University of Queensland to present the series.

Thursday, September 7, 2017
5.30 - 6.30 pm
Banco Court, QEII Courts of Law, 415 George Street
Caxton Legal Centre
Guest speakers:

Dr Kay Patterson - Age Discrimination Commissioner, The Hon Dr Kay Patterson AO

Dr Patterson is the current Age Discrimination Commissioner at the Australian Human Rights Commission, where she has focused on the rights of older workers, the blight of elder abuse and the need to encourage innovative solutions to homelessness among older Australians.

Prior to her current role, Dr Patterson enjoyed a successful career as a federal politician including time in Cabinet where she served in the Health and Social Security portfolios.

Matt Corrigan

Matt Corrigan is the Principal Legal Officer of the Australian Law Reform Commission. Matt worked on the elder abuse inquiry, completed earlier this year, and led the commission’s work on enduring powers of attorney, family agreements and superannuation.

Matt started his career in corporate law and has worked as a legal advisor to the United Nations, Australian Government and the Australian Parliament principally in the areas of human rights and law reform.

Melanie Joosten

Melanie Joosten is a writer and social worker who lives in Melbourne where she works in social policy in the areas of seniors’ rights and elder abuse.

Melanie is author several books including the nonfiction essay collection A Long Time Coming: Essays on Old Age.

She currently works as a policy officer at the Seniors Rights Victoria.