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Self-advocacy toolkit

What you need to know for better aged care

Self-advocacy or speaking up means having the right information to get the care and support you need. Explore the topics below to start.

Home Self-advocacy toolkit Protecting yourself from harm Sexual assault in aged care

Sexual assault in aged care

The first step in addressing sexual assault, is to start listening to older people who are at risk. We also need to treat older people, especially those with dementia and cognitive impairment, with the dignity and respect that they deserve. This means taking their sexual assault disclosures seriously and responding appropriately.

The #ReadyToListen campaign, led by OPAN in collaboration with Celebrate Ageing and OWN NSW, has developed a suite of resources to address sexual assault in aged care, including a Charter of Sexual Rights in Residential Aged Care, see below.

If sexual assault occurs, or is alleged or suspected, in an aged care home or in-home aged care, staff are obliged to report the incident to the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission as priority 1 under the Serious Incident Response Scheme (SIRS).

1800RESPECT is the National Sexual Assault, Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service. Call 1800 737 732

1800FULLSTOP Fullstop Australia  offer confidential counselling for people who have experienced sexual assault and for family members. Call 1800 385 578

Documents and external links

Learn more about sexual assault in aged care. These documents and websites offer help, strategies, and practical information. Brief descriptions are provided for each document or link.

The Charter of Sexual Rights and Responsibilities

The Charter outlines 14 rights and responsibilities of residents and staff in residential aged care. The aim is to support prevention of sexual assault in residential aged care, by clarifying when sexual activity is acceptable – and when is not.

Ready to Listen information and resources

The #ReadyToListen project aims to build the skills and capacity of residential aged care service providers to better respond to – and prevent – sexual assault in aged care

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