Charles Waldegrave is a psychologist and a social policy researcher. He Coordinates the Family Centre Social Policy Research Unit in Lower Hutt, Wellington, New Zealand. He is also a joint leader of four large research programmes: New Zealand Poverty Measurement Project (NZPMP); New Zealand Longitudinal Study of Ageing (NZLSA); and two National Science Challenge projects Loneliness and Social Isolation among Older Māori and Pacific People and Revitalising the Production of Affordable Homes to Provide for successful and Engaged Healthy Lives.
He is currently a member of a European research collaboration ROSEnet (Reducing Old-age Social Exclusion network) and is an international partner in their COST Action (Cooperation in Science and Technology in Europe). He has led a team that has provided the evidence base for innovative housing and income policies in New Zealand which have helped reduce child and older age poverty and stress on low income households. He has published extensively and leads workshops and educational events internationally with his colleagues.
The Excluding Impacts of Elder Abuse and Discrimination
Aim: This presentation will provide results from the New Zealand Longitudinal Study of Ageing (NZLSA). The specific aim is to explore the social exclusion impacts of elder abuse and discrimination respectively, and help identify social inclusionary approaches that overcome abuse and discrimination. There have been no previous studies measuring the prevalence of elder abuse and discrimination, the populations affected and the impacts on their lives in New Zealand.
Methods: Amartya Sen’s capabilities approach has formed the conceptual basis of the theoretical framework of this research programme (Sen, 1999). An extensive survey of a national random sample of over 3,000 older New Zealand citizens aged 50 years and over was carried out in two waves 2010 and 2012. The survey questionnaire included the Vulnerability to Abuse Screening Scale (VASS) and the Everyday Discrimination Scale. The responses were assessed for associations with gender, marital status and ethnicity, and tested for statistical associations with a range of health and wellbeing measures, including CASP-12, WHOQoL-8, SF-12 Physical and Mental Health components, CES-D Screening Test for Depression and the Gierveld Loneliness Scale
Findings: The results demonstrated significant relationships between elder abuse and discrimination with each of the independent variables. Higher discrimination and abuse scores were strongly associated with lower wellbeing and health scores, and higher loneliness and depression scores. We estimated linear regressions of elder abuse and discrimination and the results showed significant relationships for and within the models.
Relevance: The results show the important associations abuse and discrimination have with health and wellbeing, and significant demographic factors. They point to community and policy responses that can be applied to reduce abuse and discrimination, and the types of practical planning, and policy and service responses which will improve the quality of life of the people concerned and reduce