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In 2009, WITNESS and The National Council on Aging (NCOA) produced An Age for Justice: Confronting Elder Abuse in America, a film providing proof of the financial, emotional and physical abuse faced by an estimated five million older Americans every year.
WITNESS and its partners visited courageous American seniors in their homes to document their poignant stories about abuse, neglect and exploitation. With the video footage we produced a short documentary, An Age for Justice: Confronting Elder Abuse in America, and over 100 video testimonies. These films and short messages were then sent directly to Congress with a request to pass the Elder Justice Act (EJA), the first comprehensive legislation to protect older Americans from abuse. The premiere screening of An Age for Justice took place on Capitol Hill in October 2009 and has since screened in hundreds of communities across the US.
The film and advocacy work was a collaboration between the Elder Justice Coalition, WITNESS, the National Council on Aging, and 17 elder rights advocates from across the nation.
In March 2010, EJA was passed as part of the historic Healthcare Reform Bill.
EJA creates a foundation from which the US can begin to protect the rights of older Americans by providing support for programs on prevention and detection of elder abuse, dignified treatment of victims and fair prosecution of perpetrators.
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