In Australia, 1 in 6 people over 65 years old will be abused or mistreated at some time. Only a third of elder abuse victim-survivors seek help from services. The main driver of elder abuse is ageism, which devalues older people and ignores their rights.
Maria Dimopoulos will serve as the guest speaker at the launch of Seniors Rights Victoria’s World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) 2023 initiatives by exploring ways to address ageism in the workplace and how services can be more inclusive of older people in their responses to family violence.
Maria Dimopoulos is one of Australia’s most recognised names on issues of social justice and the inclusion of marginalised voices in social policy and systems reforms. She has also been a leading advocate in building connections between First Nations peoples and multicultural communities to engage in dialogue around reconciliation and truth-telling. With a legal background, Maria’s work over the last 30 years has contributed to significant advancements in addressing violence against women within Australia and internationally. She has worked unstintingly across all tiers of government, with NGO’s and with a breadth of communities to advocate for representation and inclusion. She has been appointed to numerous government advisory boards including the National Council to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children which led Australia’s first national response to family violence.
Maria’s incomparable contributions have seen her awarded the Member (AM) in the General Division of the Order of Australia for significant service to women, to cultural diversity, and to the prevention of domestic violence, a Lifetime Achievement award by the Migration Council of Australia in 2017 for her tireless devotion to Australian multiculturalism and support for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse women and the Victorian Premier’s Award for Community Harmony. She has also been recognised with a Distinguished Alumni Award by Monash University. Maria is currently the Chairperson of Safe and Equal, a member of the Coronial Council of Victoria and an Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at Federation University.