Sunday, February 10, 2008

Crimes against older people

In one of the most sickening crimes I've read about in a long time, sisters Alice and Annie Horsman - 100 and 106 years old respectively - have been robbed in a distraction burglary by two men posing a Water Board officials.

The men asked to enter the sisters' house to 'test the water' then stole a large amount of money from the living room.

But it did remind me of two very elderly sisters living in Kent who found it increasingly difficult to climb up their stairs. After much discussion they called in a stairlift company to give them a quote. Satisfied with the price, they had their new stairlift installed. Unfortunately, it stopped working within days, and despite several calls by the sisters, the company absolved itself of any responsibility, leaving the sisters heartbroken and several thousand pounds poorer.

As they could no longer get upstairs to their bedrooms, they took to sleeping in two high-backed dining chairs with blankets pulled up around their necks, and the matter was only resolved when their neighbours reported the matter to Kent Social Services.

My question is - which, if any, of these two undoubted crimes against older people is the more disgraceful? And which is more widely perpetrated?

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