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More than 1,000 women report rape by partner

Rape

By Michael Brennan and Catherine Shanahan
MORE than 1,000 women reported being raped or sexually abused by their partners in 2004, according to the latest figures from Women’s Aid.

The support organisation for victims of violence said more than 1,000 of the 12,500 women who called its service for help had reported sexual abuse by their partner.

"Issues disclosed by women included being raped repeatedly, conceiving their children as a result of rape and being sexually abused in front of their children," said spokeswoman Rachel Mullen.

Calling for a better support system to be put in place, she said there was huge stigma attached to disclosing sexual violence, especially within marriage.

"Women tell us they feel totally at the mercy of their abusive partners and wonder if the State will be able to protect them should they come forward," she said.

Fiona Neary, executive director of the Rape Crisis Network of Ireland (RCNI), said the family home posed a greater threat to women and children than any other institution.

"If you add together the figures for sexual violence against children and against women, they will show most of it occurs in the home," she said.

According to RCNI statistics, at least one-in-five women who have been in an intimate relationship with a man have experienced systematic sexual violence from a husband, partner or ex-partner. Yet Ireland has only one standing conviction for marital rape.

Earlier this week, a 49-year-old Sligo man received a six-year sentence for the rape of his wife. During evidence, the woman said he "had acted as if it was his right to rape her".

The RCNI said part of the problem was the presumption marriage provides some form of continual consent. Only three prosecutions for marital rape have been brought since the introduction of the Criminal Law Rape (Amendment) Act 1990.

Figures released by the Department of Justice last week show the number of reported rapes jumped by 35% in the last three years, from 370 to 498.

However, only a fraction of the women who are raped - one-in-10 - report the matter to gardaí.

RCNI legal co-ordinator Kate Mulkerrins blamed an adversarial legal system where the victim frequently felt on trial and suffered from a lack of co-ordinated support throughout the process. As further discouragement, 95% of rape cases end without conviction.

She said there was need for a statutory definition of what is meant by "consent" in the context of sexual contact.

Attempts to offer improved services have been hampered by Government failure to release additional money to the sector, despite promises to do so, she said.

* For information log on to www.womensaid.ie or www.rcni.ie.

 

More than 1,000 women report rape by partner

Rape

By Michael Brennan and Catherine Shanahan
MORE than 1,000 women reported being raped or sexually abused by their partners in 2004, according to the latest figures from Women’s Aid.

The support organisation for victims of violence said more than 1,000 of the 12,500 women who called its service for help had reported sexual abuse by their partner.

"Issues disclosed by women included being raped repeatedly, conceiving their children as a result of rape and being sexually abused in front of their children," said spokeswoman Rachel Mullen.

Calling for a better support system to be put in place, she said there was huge stigma attached to disclosing sexual violence, especially within marriage.

"Women tell us they feel totally at the mercy of their abusive partners and wonder if the State will be able to protect them should they come forward," she said.

Fiona Neary, executive director of the Rape Crisis Network of Ireland (RCNI), said the family home posed a greater threat to women and children than any other institution.

"If you add together the figures for sexual violence against children and against women, they will show most of it occurs in the home," she said.

According to RCNI statistics, at least one-in-five women who have been in an intimate relationship with a man have experienced systematic sexual violence from a husband, partner or ex-partner. Yet Ireland has only one standing conviction for marital rape.

Earlier this week, a 49-year-old Sligo man received a six-year sentence for the rape of his wife. During evidence, the woman said he "had acted as if it was his right to rape her".

The RCNI said part of the problem was the presumption marriage provides some form of continual consent. Only three prosecutions for marital rape have been brought since the introduction of the Criminal Law Rape (Amendment) Act 1990.

Figures released by the Department of Justice last week show the number of reported rapes jumped by 35% in the last three years, from 370 to 498.

However, only a fraction of the women who are raped - one-in-10 - report the matter to gardaí.

RCNI legal co-ordinator Kate Mulkerrins blamed an adversarial legal system where the victim frequently felt on trial and suffered from a lack of co-ordinated support throughout the process. As further discouragement, 95% of rape cases end without conviction.

She said there was need for a statutory definition of what is meant by "consent" in the context of sexual contact.

Attempts to offer improved services have been hampered by Government failure to release additional money to the sector, despite promises to do so, she said.

* For information log on to www.womensaid.ie or www.rcni.ie.

 

More than 1,000 women report rape by partner

Rape

By Michael Brennan and Catherine Shanahan
MORE than 1,000 women reported being raped or sexually abused by their partners in 2004, according to the latest figures from Women’s Aid.

The support organisation for victims of violence said more than 1,000 of the 12,500 women who called its service for help had reported sexual abuse by their partner.

"Issues disclosed by women included being raped repeatedly, conceiving their children as a result of rape and being sexually abused in front of their children," said spokeswoman Rachel Mullen.

Calling for a better support system to be put in place, she said there was huge stigma attached to disclosing sexual violence, especially within marriage.

"Women tell us they feel totally at the mercy of their abusive partners and wonder if the State will be able to protect them should they come forward," she said.

Fiona Neary, executive director of the Rape Crisis Network of Ireland (RCNI), said the family home posed a greater threat to women and children than any other institution.

"If you add together the figures for sexual violence against children and against women, they will show most of it occurs in the home," she said.

According to RCNI statistics, at least one-in-five women who have been in an intimate relationship with a man have experienced systematic sexual violence from a husband, partner or ex-partner. Yet Ireland has only one standing conviction for marital rape.

Earlier this week, a 49-year-old Sligo man received a six-year sentence for the rape of his wife. During evidence, the woman said he "had acted as if it was his right to rape her".

The RCNI said part of the problem was the presumption marriage provides some form of continual consent. Only three prosecutions for marital rape have been brought since the introduction of the Criminal Law Rape (Amendment) Act 1990.

Figures released by the Department of Justice last week show the number of reported rapes jumped by 35% in the last three years, from 370 to 498.

However, only a fraction of the women who are raped - one-in-10 - report the matter to gardaí.

RCNI legal co-ordinator Kate Mulkerrins blamed an adversarial legal system where the victim frequently felt on trial and suffered from a lack of co-ordinated support throughout the process. As further discouragement, 95% of rape cases end without conviction.

She said there was need for a statutory definition of what is meant by "consent" in the context of sexual contact.

Attempts to offer improved services have been hampered by Government failure to release additional money to the sector, despite promises to do so, she said.

* For information log on to www.womensaid.ie or www.rcni.ie.

 

More than 1,000 women report rape by partner

Rape

By Michael Brennan and Catherine Shanahan
MORE than 1,000 women reported being raped or sexually abused by their partners in 2004, according to the latest figures from Women’s Aid.

The support organisation for victims of violence said more than 1,000 of the 12,500 women who called its service for help had reported sexual abuse by their partner.

"Issues disclosed by women included being raped repeatedly, conceiving their children as a result of rape and being sexually abused in front of their children," said spokeswoman Rachel Mullen.

Calling for a better support system to be put in place, she said there was huge stigma attached to disclosing sexual violence, especially within marriage.

"Women tell us they feel totally at the mercy of their abusive partners and wonder if the State will be able to protect them should they come forward," she said.

Fiona Neary, executive director of the Rape Crisis Network of Ireland (RCNI), said the family home posed a greater threat to women and children than any other institution.

"If you add together the figures for sexual violence against children and against women, they will show most of it occurs in the home," she said.

According to RCNI statistics, at least one-in-five women who have been in an intimate relationship with a man have experienced systematic sexual violence from a husband, partner or ex-partner. Yet Ireland has only one standing conviction for marital rape.

Earlier this week, a 49-year-old Sligo man received a six-year sentence for the rape of his wife. During evidence, the woman said he "had acted as if it was his right to rape her".

The RCNI said part of the problem was the presumption marriage provides some form of continual consent. Only three prosecutions for marital rape have been brought since the introduction of the Criminal Law Rape (Amendment) Act 1990.

Figures released by the Department of Justice last week show the number of reported rapes jumped by 35% in the last three years, from 370 to 498.

However, only a fraction of the women who are raped - one-in-10 - report the matter to gardaí.

RCNI legal co-ordinator Kate Mulkerrins blamed an adversarial legal system where the victim frequently felt on trial and suffered from a lack of co-ordinated support throughout the process. As further discouragement, 95% of rape cases end without conviction.

She said there was need for a statutory definition of what is meant by "consent" in the context of sexual contact.

Attempts to offer improved services have been hampered by Government failure to release additional money to the sector, despite promises to do so, she said.

* For information log on to www.womensaid.ie or www.rcni.ie.