Approaches and principles of intervention in mistreatment

Our intervention approach is one of empowerment that focuses on an individual’s self-determination, strengths, abilities, and resiliency. This approach values; the promotion and recognition of values, beliefs, assertiveness, respect for decisions-making, while taking into account their priorities as well as, validation of their lived experience. In addition, recognizing and promoting the older adult’s self-determination, as well as advocacy, are key principles that lie at the heart of our interventions.

Systemic analysis

In order to have a global view of the situation, the Elder Mistreatment Helpline (LAAA) adopts a systemic analysis [1] to assess the vulnerability and the level of risk. We attach importance to the older adult’s values and family history, taking into account the various individuals and systems with which they interact (family and friends, social network, neighborhood, institutions, etc.) and the role they play in the life of the older adult. In certain situations, an older adult may come to trust and depend on others to support and assist them or they may be in a position of providing care themselves. This dynamic can create a particular difficult situation for the older adult to report if the relationship becomes one of mistreatment, whether it is intentional or not. In this regard, the Elder Mistreatment Helpline (LAAA) is aware that this can be particularly challenging and therefore, whenever possible, our interventions attempt to find possible real solutions that can help maintain or improve family ties, taking into account all the needs of those involved.

Intersectoral approach

Since situations of mistreatment can often be complex and / or may require interventions in the older adults living environment, the Elder Mistreatment Helpline (LAAA) favors an intersectoral and interdisciplinary collaborative approach. For this reason, our aim is to identify the resources or areas of expertise required by the situation (medical, legal, financial, community, etc.) and direct the callers to them. We collaborate and work in partnership with different sectors of intervention and organizations concerned, always with respect of confidentiality.

[1] Systemic analysis consists of the analysis of the interactions between the people involved in the situation of mistreatment (Algorithm of the routing of the calls coming from the population, Elder Mistreatment Helpline, 2017).