Elder Mediation a way to resolve elder abuse in Ireland

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Karin Leiva Vega
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There are few studies in the field of elder abuse and its relationship to elder mediation, so there is a wide field of research to develop for those interested in this topic and the field of mediation. The present research aims to explore elder mediation in Ireland and discover the experience of me diators as a conflict resolution tool in elder abuse. To explore its potential as a means of helping older adults to resolve any abuse-related problems they may be facing. To this end, the researcher has collected qualitative data from six mediators working in elder media tion in Ireland. The information was collected through semi-structured in-depth interviews, which were then transcribed and analysed through thematic analysis. The primary outcome of the research shows the urgent need to raise awareness of older people's mediation and the relevance it can have when working in coordination with services that could ben efit from it as a means of conflict resolution. It is essential to highlight that it is recognised that this type of mediation is not possible to apply in cases of severe mistreatment; however, as the researcher delves deeper into the subject, she discov ers that there is also evidence of less visible situations of mistreatment, either because of shame, fear or the simple need for better communication in the face of the problems that families have to solve when there is an older adult in the family and who requires specialised attention. In this situa tion, mediation for the elderly has a great potential to make a good contribution and is a developing area. On the other hand, it was also evident that not all mediators were unwilling to collaborate with this type of research. Their reactions to abuse generated distance and rejection when they were encour aged to talk about it. In contrast, those who participated in the study were passionate, available, and open to discussing and analysing the possibility of using elder mediation to resolve some elder abuse issues. Mediators, through their experiences, show us when and how they have been con fronted with elder abuse and why they are willing to want to share it. Finally, the significant contribution of this research is that it intends to contribute to the debate on the place of elder mediation and its relation to types of abuse. The intention is to propose discussing it, reflecting and contributing to the conflict resolution of older adults and those needs that are hard to talk about
Vega, 2022