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RECOGNIZING AND CURTAILING SENIOR BULLYING AMONG OLDER ADULTS

WHATSenior bullying prevention program that can be used for training staff and educating senior residents at retirement homes, nursing facilities and older adult centers.
WHYTo prevent senior on senior bullying and create a culture of standing up against bullying in adult living communities, retirement homes, nursing care homes and senior centers.
WHERERobin Bonifas, PhD, MSW Associate Professor.
School of Social Work Arizona State University.
Arizona Geriatrics Society.


Program Description


"It tends to take place in senior centers or nursing homes or assisted living facilities, places where they're spending a lot of time and need to share resources, whether it's chairs or tables or TV stations or staff attention."
- Robin Bonifas

" 'Third party bystanders are part of the problem,' she says. 'If people see this, they should get involved. Go to the staff. Speak up the same way you would if you saw it at a bus stop. Sometimes, people aren't sure what to do because the bully might be impaired, not functioning on all cylinders. But you need to get somebody to come and help.' "
– Psychologist Renee Garfinkel
source: nbcnews.com article: Mean Old Girls – Seniors Who Bully.

Seniors can be the targets of bullying or can be responsible for bullying other seniors in retirement homes or other shared living facilities. Factors such as limited access to resources, living space, entertainment and finances, being at odds with nursing care staff, along with possible illness, dementia, pain or discomfort experienced by seniors may contribute to the need to control, intimidate and take out their frustrations on other seniors.

The affect on elderly who are bullied can range from withdrawing from social activities, low self-esteem, depression, to moving out of a retirement home or transferring to another nursing facility.

The ‘Recognizing and Curtailing Senior Bullying Among Older Adults’ guide covers the following topics to help prevent senior to senior bullying:

  • Characteristics of bullying among older adults.
  • Definition of senior bulling.
  • What does senior bullying look like and example behaviors.
  • Types of senior bulling.
  • Who bullys seniors, who can be a bully, types of people who bully and people who are the targets of bullying.
  • The impact of bullying on older adults.
  • Recognizing potential bullying situations.
  • How to deal with Interventions to address bullying and creating a culture for both seniors and staff to stand up for what is right.

Information on senior bullying for the project is based on the experiences at assisted living facilities, working with individuals and organizations impacted by senior bullying, and research literature on bullying among other population groups.
source: arizonageriatrics.org

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