Turkish Journal of Geriatrics 2016 , Vol 19, Issue 4
Zeynep ŞİŞLİ1, Melahat KIZIL2, Nursun ÜSTÜNKARLI2, M. İlgi ŞEMİN2
1İzmir University of Economics, Faculty of Law, İZMİR
2İzmir University of Economics, Vocational School of Health Services, İZMİR
Introduction: The weakness and dependence of elders may expose them to abuse and neglect more than other age groups. This research aimed to evaluate legal awareness of elderly about which behaviors of abuse and neglect could be considered as criminal.

Materials and Method: A questionnaire was administered during face-to-face interviews to 74 elderly people (>65 years of age) in a nursing home in Izmir. The statistical analysis of data was evaluated by SPSS 21.

Results: Majority of the participants demonstrated legal awareness regarding physical and psychological behaviors that could be considered criminal, whereas many were unaware that these behaviors could be considered criminal even when the perpetrator acts unintentionally. Most of the participants were aware of increased penalties in cases where abuse or neglect is committed against those unable to defend themselves because of age; and for cases of torment. However it is also seen that many of them did not apply to legal ways when they experienced that type of behaviors.

Conclusion: It is important to increase awareness regarding the criminal nature of abuse and neglect against elderly and to establish effective and easily accessible legal assistance. Keywords : Aged; Elder Abuse; Criminal Law