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EDITORIAL: No place in our society for abuse of the elderly


BARBADOS NATION

EDITORIAL: No place in our society for abuse of the elderly

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REPREHENSIBLE! As a society that boasts of being civilised and not barbaric, we should all hang our heads in shame when we see acts of injustice and abuse against the most vulnerable in our society. The elderly, young children, as well as those with special needs fall within this group.

So imagine the shock and the pain many would have felt after witnessing the mistreatment of an elderly woman that was captured in a disturbing video that went viral this week.

The video, which had many burning with rage, showed a frail elderly woman using her hands as she dragged herself across the floor of a nursing home and being kicked and hit on the top of the head at least three times by a worker at the Christ Church home.

The video sparked much debate and comment on Facebook, in particular. Many condemned the abuse at the hands of the ones entrusted with the responsibility of taking care of the elderly.

The footage has since triggered a police investigation but this has not silenced those who were riled by the sight of the abuse.

It is nothing short of shameful and disgusting to witness this behaviour meted out to an elderly person who should be treated with love and care.

Citizens who are in their twilight years are deserving of better treatment. For them to have given years of service, toiling and paving the way for future generations and then to be treated in this way, is deplorable and shameful.

This video highlights the need for us as a country to make sure that better systems are in place when it comes to dealing with some of our most vulnerable. There must not only be proper training of those responsible for taking care of our elderly, but proper checks and monitoring systems must be put in place to protect our seniors from ill-treatment and other wrongdoing.

The Ministry of Health must also ensure that nursing homes are not only equipped to handle the needs and care of our seniors, but are operating efficiently, ensuring that workers are well trained to provide the essentials for residents. It is not at all comforting to those who pay thousands of dollars to guarantee proper care for their parents and loved ones, to realise that they are being ill treated.

This abuse must stop. We need to cherish our senior citizens. They are the ones who have worked hard to bring this country to where it is today. Their twilight years must be enjoyed and not be consumed with cries for help.

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