A new public survey is now open and Albertans are invited to provide input into the new definition of elder abuse. The revised definition will be used to inform legislation, policies and programs to better meet the needs of seniors and support organizations. As the foundation for this work and a new provincial strategy to prevent and fight elder abuse, a clear and specific definition will improve the safety and well-being of seniors across the province.

Stakeholders and the public can share their thoughts on the enhanced definition through the online survey at alberta.ca. The survey is open until Oct. 25.

“Elder abuse is unacceptable in any form. Seniors should be the most cherished members in any community. We will work with communities, stakeholders and Albertans of all ages to strengthen protections for seniors and end elder abuse in all its forms. A consistent definition of elder abuse is the first step to shaping our new strategy to address this issue in Alberta.”

Josephine Pon, Minister of Seniors and Housing

“Having a common definition to define elder abuse in Alberta is a key step forward to recognizing the impact and severity that elder abuse has in the lives of older adults experiencing it. The Alberta Elder Abuse Awareness Council appreciates the Government of Alberta’s leadership in creating this definition.”

Shantel Ottenbreit, chair, Alberta Elder Abuse Awareness Council

Other supports

Alberta’s government has produced several resources to support individuals and organizations as they work to prevent and address elder abuse:

Quick facts

  • Elder abuse is currently defined as any action or inaction, by self or others, that jeopardizes the health or well-being of an older adult.
  • Prior to 2020, it was estimated nearly one in 10 Alberta seniors may be abused in some way.
  • Rates of family violence, including elder abuse, tend to increase during and following natural disasters, public health crises and economic downturns.
  • It is important to know where to turn if you or someone you know is experiencing family violence.
    • Call 911 if you, or someone you know, is being abused and is in immediate danger.
    • The police can apply for an Emergency Protection Order to provide you with immediate protection if you are in imminent danger.
    • A 24-hour Family Violence Info Line is available at     310-1818 to receive anonymous help in more than 170 languages.
    • There are three elder abuse shelters in Alberta:
      • Kerby Rotary Shelter in Calgary – 403-705-3250
      • Sage Seniors Safe House in Edmonton – 780-702-1520
      • Elder Abuse Shelter in Red Deer – 403-343-6074