NEWS: CSF II grantee EEPNA commemorates World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

June 24, 2014 - The Ethiopian Elderly and Pensioners National Association (EEPNA) organised a half-day panel discussion on 24th of June 2014 observing the World Elder Abuse Awareness Day 2014. The United Nations has designated 15th of June as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD).
EEPNA is one of the 18 CSOs that won grant contract from the Ethiopia-European Union Civil Society Fund II. The 20 months long project worth 190,000 EUR aims to contribute to the recognition, protection and fulfilment of the rights of elderly citizens in Ethiopia.
The forum organised by EEPNA and HelpAge International brought together participants from different government offices namely the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC), the Ombudsman, Police Commission, Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (MoLSA) as well as HelpAge International (partner of EEPNA), and members of EEPNA.
Keynote remarks were given by the EHRC and Ombudsman who acknowledged their organisations' limited engagement in promoting and protecting the rights of the elderly and expressed their respective commitments to continue their support and engagement with EEPNA.
HelpAge International Country Director Ato Feleke Tadelle gave a brief overview of the situation of older people vulnerability in Ethiopia. In Ethiopia, one can say that there is good social protection due to the culture. The Constitution, the National Human Right Action Plan and the judiciary relatively provides protection to older people; though there is limitation in implementation.
EEPNA's board member Aba Abiy Kasaye noted that older people in Ethiopia face discriminations in accessing basic service such as housing, health, saving and credit. They also face violence ranging from evictions from their properties to physical abuse.
To put in place better binding instrument nationally and globally, EEPNA and HelpAge International are advocating for and collecting petition to have an international mechanism namely a UN convention on the rights of older people.