Aged care staff urgently need training to report and prevent sexual assault
An estimated 50 sexual assaults occur nationally every week in Australian residential aged care facilities. Despite this shocking figure, none of the Aged Care Royal Commission’s 148 recommendations released earlier this year specifically address the prevention of sexual violence.
Our recent study, published in the International Journal of Older Persons Nursing, found two-thirds of aged care staff had not received any training in prevention of sexual violence in the previous 12 months. Staff confirmed aged care approved providers often do not have dedicated or specific procedures to prevent or manage incidents.
Failing to combat sexual violence in aged care homes demonstrates an apathy towards older survivors and reinforces the existing difficulties faced by older people to achieve a basic human right: to live free from sexual violence.