Here's how many women and children suffered domestic violence in 2014

Newly released figures reveal thousands of women have to rely on domestic violence services every year.

Up to 9,500 women and more than 3,000 children received support from domestic violence services in 2014.

SAFE Ireland, the National Domestic Violence Organisation, is urging candidates and political parties to face up to the problem of domestic violence.

Sharon O'Halloran CEO of SAFE Ireland, says because many domestic violence victims do not seek help, the true figure is probably much higher.

She said: "There were 50,000 helpline calls answered. Now these are shocking figures when you consider that 79% of women in Ireland never disclose serious physical or sexual violence by a partner to anyone."

She also says the new statistics highlight the reality of struggling services and obstacles that exist in the State's overall support system for women and children.

SAFE Ireland is calling for the next Government to implement the three actions below within the first 100 Days of its election:

1. Allocate an additional €30m annually (from 2017) to address immediate gaps across all struggling services, from Garda to housing, and to ensure prevention work.

2. Appoint a Minister, Department and Cabinet Sub-Committee to spearhead a whole of Government response to domestic violence.

3. Enact new legislation on domestic violence and victims rights, with a commitment to look at the definition of domestic violence.

Here are the group's findings:

9,448 individual women and 3,028 individual children received support and/or accommodation from a domestic violence service.

48,888 helpline support and information calls were received.

1,658 individual women and 2,309 individual children stayed in refuge,

8,451 women received a wide range of face to face supports including advociacy, emotional and practical support, counselling, court accompaniments etc.

1,158 children received non-accommodation direct support including counselling, play therapy, school placement, afterschool etc.

4,831 requests for refuge could not be met because the refuge was full.

899 children living in refuge for a period of time were aged under-four. 217 were babies under one and 422 were aged between 10 and 14. 123 teenagers were aged between 15 and 18.

89% of Irish people believe that domestic violence is an issue for all of society (Red C poll Dec 2015).

82% - rising to 87% amongst women – said that domestic violence should be prioritized by Government (Red C poll Dec 2015).

 

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