Left to right: Marisa Martin, Project Officer at SCALES Community Legal Centre; Karen Merrin, Manager of Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre; Judy Love, volunteer; Bruce Carstairs, Project Officer of SCALES Community Legal Centre

The issue of elder abuse has been highlighted through an artwork of crocheted flowers four metres in length, named the Purple Road.

The Purple Road was started by volunteers working on the Older People’s Peer Education Scheme (OPPES), a pilot program across five local government areas that aims to target 2,000 seniors.

The OPPES is a partnership between SCALES Community Legal Centre and the Northern Suburbs Community Legal Centre and uses volunteers to provide peer education to individuals, seniors' groups and seniors' support services. Through the project, volunteers aim to increase the awareness of older Australians on the risks of elder abuse and provide them with information and strategies to prevent and reduce the incidence and severity of abuse happening to them.

The Purple Road is being used successfully as a tool to open up discussion of elder abuse in the community. A second ‘road’ is being developed in Rockingham and Kwinana.

The Department of Communities works to reduce elder abuse in WA through the provision of information designed to support individuals and service providers. It also collaborates with government and non-government agencies to develop policies and deliver services to help stop elder abuse.

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