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Image / Editorial

Domestic violence calls have increased by 25% since lockdown


by Shayna Sappington
09th Jun 2020
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As domestic abuse incidents continue to climb during the pandemic, the gardaí respond with a targeted plan


An Garda Síochána reported a 25 percent increase in calls for assistance in relation to domestic violence issues in the past year.

In response, the gardaí launched Operation Faoiseamh in April to ensure victims are supported and protected during this homebound phase.

Set up by the Garda’s Protective Services Bureau, the operation allocated 261 officers from protective services units around the country to focus on this issue.

Making a difference

Since April 1, officers have reached out to 8,229 victims of domestic abuse and a number of those victims have asked for further support and resources.

These efforts were deeply impactful and over the last two weeks of May, 107 men were prosecuted in relation to domestic violence charges.

The Detective Chief Superintendent Declan Daly spoke about the operation’s positive results, saying that he is glad to see it provide much needed support for victims.

These prosecutions have helped hundreds of families and Daly hopes they will “serve as a reminder to all that breaching domestic abuse court orders is an offence and can result in court proceedings”.

Domestic abuse resources and support numbers

There are many resources available for victims of domestic abuse.

The Women’s Aid 24hr National Freephone Helpline is available 24/7 on 1-800-341-900. The National Helpline is a safe, confidential and non-judgmental space to talk through what is happening at home and get practical support, including emergency safe accommodation.

The Women’s Aid website also has helpful information available on detecting warning signs, what to do if you need help or if you are in immediate danger.

Men’s Aid Ireland is a service for men who are experiencing domestic violence. You can call them on 01-554-3811 or email [email protected]. Their helpline is open Monday to Friday, from 9am to 5pm.

Other resources available include:

Women’s Aid Coercive Control guide: https://bit.ly/2RlbS0l

Safe Ireland guide: https://bit.ly/2TvdnMa

Aoibhneas is a women and children’s refuge. You can contact them 24 hours a day on 01 867 0701 or email [email protected].

Childline is a confidential support service for children and young people. They take calls about a wide range of difficulties, including abuse. You can contact them 24 hours a day on 1800 666 666. You can also text ‘Talk’ to 50101.

If you are in immediate danger contact the Gardaí or call 999.

 

Read more: Coercive control: 10 warning signs and where to go for help

Read more: ‘Haven’t we lost enough lives?’: Calls for CervicalCheck to be reinstated as Ireland enters Phase 2 of reopening

Read more: ‘We’ve been trapped inside our homes and our heads since March’ — the looming mental health crisis and what we can do to tackle it

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