Calls to gardaí for domestic abuse and violence up 18% this year

‘Renewed focus’ on prosecution and enforcement under third phase of domestic violence operation

Level 5 travel restrictions do not apply in the case of domestic violence or when at risk from harm. Photograph used is staged. Photograph: iStock

Level 5 travel restrictions do not apply in the case of domestic violence or when at risk from harm. Photograph used is staged. Photograph: iStock

 

Gardaí will today commence a third phase of Operation Faoiseamh, a programme which seeks to protect victims of domestic violence.

In a statement, An Garda Síochána said the vulnerable and victims of abuse, will continue to receive the “highest priority response” from them.

Under the third phase of the operation, gardaí will reach out and make contact with previous victims to provide reassurance, support and to offer the assistance of local and specialised resources.

There will also be a “renewed focus” on the enforcement of court orders and the prosecution of offenders.

Between January 1st and October 12th, 15,320 contacts or attempts to contact domestic abuse victims were recorded under the operation.

There was an 18 per cent year-on-year increase in the number of domestic issues-related calls to the gardaí. There was also a 14.7 per cent increase in the detection for offences relating to breaches of court orders under the relevant provisions of the Domestic Violence Act, 2018.

Between the May 13th and the May 27th, there was a total of 107 prosecutions connected to the operation.

Speaking in advance of the announcement, Det Chief Supt Declan Daly, Garda National Protective Services Bureau said the gardaí are “mindful of the fear and concern” some people in the community may have.

“ I wish to take this opportunity to re-emphasise our commitment to protect the most vulnerable in society,” he said.

“Operation Faoiseamh has been established to ensure you are safe, if you feel threatened or are in fear please contact us and we will respond quickly and robustly.”

He added: “If you are a victim of abuse or you know of a family member or friend who is a victim of such abuse, that information is important to us and I ask that you make contact with An Garda Síochána. If you require urgent assistance or support, please call 999 or 112, we are there to listen to help and to protect.”

Gardaí also highlighted that although the country is in Level 5, the travel restrictions do not apply in the case of domestic violence or when at risk from harm.

That statement added that resources dedicated to the support of vulnerable and victims of domestic violence have not been affected during the response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

- The 24/7 freephone helpline for Womens_Aid is 1800 341 900. There is an instant-messaging service on womensaid.ie

- SafeIreland.ie lists 38 domestic abuse services across Ireland

- Male Advice Line for male victims: 1800 816 588

- For urgent help, call 999 or 112