The helpline, functional since 2002, has played a crucial role in helping senior citizens facing abuse in the city.
Here’s some good news for all senior citizens who live across Bengaluru – the city’s Elders Helpline will now be functional round the clock.
The helpline is an initiative of both Bangalore City Police and the Nightingales Medical Trust, an organisation that provides aid and medical support for the elderly. The 1090 helpline had originally been instated in 2002 but it was only available from 8am to 8pm.
But recognising that there might be emergencies outside of those hours, authorities have now made it a 24/7 helpline that will provide support and address all emergencies as and when they take place.
Image for representation. Photo source
Swati Bhandari, project in-charge of the helpline, spoke to Deccan Herald, noting, “We have had a great response for the helpline as elders in distress feel secure and know help is at hand. We receive over 1,500 calls a month and around 20-30 calls on an average every day. Some call to get information while others complain of neglect and physical abuse. It is heartening to be able to help so many people every day.”
According to authorities, one of the main reasons they decided to extend the helpline through the night was to let senior citizens know that they will have a support system at any given point. A report from The Hindu quoted Dr. Radha S. Murthy, Managing Trustee, Nightingales Medical Trust, as saying that out of the 10 lakh or so senior citizens that live in Bengaluru, about 3 lakh of them face some form of abuse, be it physical, emotional or financial.
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The helpline will officially become functional from April 26, 2017, and will be launched by Bengaluru City Police Commissioner Praveen Sood.
The toll-free helpline number is 1090.