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Domestic & Sexual Violence Campaign


This year was a year of many new and old things meeting in the same place. It was, or righteously still is, the 100 years celebration of the 1916 rising. This year the Irish have been taking a walk down memory lane and measuring things to the present moment, much have changed, but lots have not.

This is the same with domestic violence and sexual abuse in the house. It is history come tomorrow, but it is never quite over, until something is done about it. The problem is, no-one who is “there” knows what to do and that is why victims of abuse needs guidance and support.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, Ms. Frances Fitzgerald T.D., launched a national awareness campaign on Domestic and Sexual Violence called “What would you do?” this week. The campaign will continue for six years. Three of the six years will focus on domestic violence and three will focus on sexual violence.

“This campaign is about prevention. It is about empowerment and it’s about support. It offers hope and support to victims of such violence and it empowers us as witnesses to such violence to find out what we can do to help stop domestic violence and to support people who are caught up in this most devastating of human experiences,” the Tánaiste said.

The campaign’s cost has been covered for two of the six years and €950,000 has been awarded for 2016 and 2017, and an additional funding of €200,000 has been awarded under the Dormant Accounts Fund. The campaign forms part of the Second National Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence.

The “What would you do?” campaign will use TV, cinema, radio, outdoor, social and digital advertising to reach the broader public on issues related to domestic and sexual violence. The website has been made available for witnesses to a domestic violence act to search for advice and information on how to support such victims of violence.

In Ireland 15% of women and 6% of men have been violently abused by a partner and 29% of women and 26% of men suffer domestic abuse in the general sense. According to the findings of the Cosc survey more women are victimised than men, and 70% of the people think of it to be a common problem in Ireland.

Let’s hope that the next six years will be a time for the people of Ireland to learn more about what violence eventually brings about and how to deal with problems that lead up to these moments differently, in order to prevent this. The campaign aims to encourage those who have fallen silent to break the silence. Breaking the silence is the first step to recovering.

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