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Dublin: 6 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019

Chief whip confirms national survey on sexual violence will take five years to complete

It’s been 17 years since the Savi – Sexual Abuse and Violence in Ireland – report, was published.

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IT HAS BEEN confirmed today that the second major national study on sexual violence in Ireland will take up to five years to complete.

Last year, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) was tasked to oversee the development and delivery of the survey. 

It’s been 17 years since the Savi – Sexual Abuse and Violence in Ireland – report, was published. Taoiseach Leo Varadkar committed to conducting another report last year. 

The survey was set to begin this year, with Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan stating that it should be completed within 18 months.

However, late last year there was speculation it could take a lot longer, with CSO director general Padraig Dalton stating that “given the complexity and sensitivity” of the survey, it is envisaged that the entire process of scoping, planning, executing and reporting on the survey may take in the region of five years. 

The timeline was today confirmed by the government Chief Whip Sean Kyne, who said that before the survey work can begin, a scoping exercise must be undertaken.

Due to the sensitive nature of the questions that will be asked, specialist training and expertise will be required by the CSO in order to carry out the work, he said. 

Kyne told the Oireachtas committee today that due to these complexities, “the scoping, planning and executing” of the survey “may take in the region of five years”. 

“We all hope that could be reduced… if five years is required, well then that will be required,” he said, adding that exact timelines will only emerge as the scoping process progresses. 

He added it is vital that the planning and execution of the survey is done in a  professional manner, stating that the interviews will be of a “very sensitive nature”. 

Kyne said those taking part must be assured that their data is safe and the information they give is absolutely confidential. He added that everyone would love the survey to be done a lot quicker. 

Labour’s Joan Burton said she was extremely disappointed to hear it will take half a decade to complete. 

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