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Domestic abuse supports still available during latest sets of Covid restrictions

Domestic abuse can be something other than physical: it can mean you’re isolated from friends or control is taken over your personal items.

Image: Shutterstock/fizkes

DOMESTIC ABUSE HELPLINES will remain operating during the Level 5 restrictions.

The Minister for Justice Helen McEntee had a message for victims that frontline services would continue to respond toe domestic abuse incidents during the Christmas period and for duration of the restrictions on movement required to reduce the spread of Covid-19.

Domestic abuse can mean more than physical abuse: it can mean isolation from friends and family; control over access to money, phones, or other items; and threats to others.

An Garda Síochána will continue to treat domestic abuse incidents as a priority, Minister McEntee said:

I want perpetrators to know that irrespective of the holiday season and of the level of restrictions in place, there will be no let-up in our efforts to tackle domestic and sexual violence. Gardaí have placed a renewed focus on the enforcement of court orders, and the prosecution of offenders.

The Courts Service are also continuing to prioritise domestic abuse cases throughout the pandemic, the Minister for Justice said. Anyone seeking information should contact their local court office for more information or visit here for contact details and information about the protections victims of domestic abuse can apply for.

The Legal Aid Board also continues to prioritise domestic abuse cases and all law centres will be open on the working days over the Christmas period. Anyone in need of legal advice service should contact their local centre and further information is available here.

  • Information on supports for victims is available here: stillhere.ie

Still here

Minister McEntee urged those in danger to reach out for help, particularly as the Christmas period can be particularly hard for people.

We know that every year over the Christmas period there is a rise in domestic abuse incidents and this year we are facing the added difficulty of being asked to further restrict our movements.
I am very conscious of what this means for victims of domestic abuse and I want them to know that the supports and protections offered by frontline services will continue, uninterrupted, throughout the holiday period and for the duration of the Level 5 restrictions.

“Anyone who is a victim of domestic abuse or is in fear for their safety at any time should reach out for help. Don’t wait. As always, I want to stress that restrictions on movement introduced as a result of the pandemic do not apply to anyone seeking help.”

Minister of State for Law Reform James Browne also urged victims of domestic abuse to reach out and not wait until after the holidays if they are afraid or in danger.

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“We are working to protect victims of domestic abuse and, regardless of the time of year, victims should make contact with frontline services if they are under threat of violence or harm, or if they are being subjected to other forms of domestic abuse.

“We know that at this time of year the threat to victims of domestic abuse intensifies and our services will respond to make you safe and to keep you safe.” 

If you need help, here is a list of resources:

  • Legal Aid Board Helpline: 1890 615 200 or 01 646 9600
  • Women’s Aid Freephone Helpline: 1800 341 900
  • Rape Crisis Centre National Helpline: 1800 77 8888
  • Male Domestic Abuse Advice Line: 1800 816 588
  • Men’s Aid Ireland: 01 554 3811
  • Directory of local domestic violence services at www.safeireland.ie
  • Directory of local sexual violence services at https://www.rapecrisishelp.ie/

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