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Govt plans to protect elderly from abuse

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The government is exploring ways to strengthen its framework to protect the elderly from abuse, Justice Minister Marios Hartsiotis said on Thursday.

Speaking following a meeting with Third age observatory chairman Demos Antoniou, he said an agreement had been signed between his ministry, the observatory, and the police, to cooperate on the matter.

The agreement entails the joint organisation of information and education campaigns for society on the issues of abuse and financial exploitation of the elderly, the creation of emergency response protocols, and the strengthening of communication channels between the observatory and the police.

In addition, the training of police officers on matters such as recognising signs of abuse among the elderly and how to communicate with and handle them, which began in 2018, will continue.

Hartsiotis pointed out that the European Union considers this training to be “good practice” and added that Cyprus is “seen as a pioneer in such matters”.

He said the government is showing a “special interest” in the matter, and that actions to help elderly people “must be prioritised”.

Antoniou thanked Hartsiotis for arranging the meeting and his “sincere interest in the protection of the elderly in Cyprus”.

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