Tuesday, 17 August 2010

is nowhere safe?

i was really saddened to hear the news this morning (radion nz, morning report, 8.50am) of a blenheim resthome worker who has been sentenced for sexually abusing vulnerable elderly women. what was particularly sad is that all of these women had physical or mental illnesses, and their ages ranged from 57 to 96. many of them weren't able to communicate what had been done to them.

the only reason this case came to light was through an anonymous complaint to the CEO of the group that owns this resthome. he says in the clip that he can imagine many such complaints being ignored, and it was just a matter of luck that this one was taken seriously.

the police are now calling for elderly victims of sexual abuse to come forward. unfortunately many of them just won't be physically able. i now know that there is such a thing as gerontophilia, though i wish i didn't.

it seems that there is no age and no place that is safe. there is so little that women can do to protect themselves when a perpretrator is bent on abuse.

update: an interview this morning with a daughter of one of the victims (radio nz, nine to noon, 9.25am) brings out the fact that complaints had been made prior to the anonymous letter by a staff member to the CEO. these complaints had not been acted upon.

1 comment:

Hugh said...

Bear in mind Stargazer that gerontophilia can lead to consensual relationships. In fact, I expect in the majority of cases that's exactly what it does lead to.