€160k in supports announced for domestic violence groups

€160k in supports announced for domestic violence groups

Over €160,000 in funding and supports have been provided to frontline groups that support victims of domestic abuse.

They are part of a new collaborative campaign between the Department of Justice and frontline organisations to ensure that victims are aware of and can access services.

A new campaign to reassure victims of domestic abuse that support is still available despite Covid-19.

New TV and radio adverts which highlight issues raised for some peope by the need to stay at home will be aired from next week. They will carry the message to victims that services are still available despite the COVID-19 emergency.

Under the programme, Women's Aid will receive €63,000 for additional resources to extend the Support and Referral Service (SRS) and the High Risk Support project.

The Rape Crisis Centre Network will receive €50,000 to support the work of local centres in relation to the provision of a confidential, data compliant service, and to manage information flows on advice and guidance to and from front line trauma support workers.

Ruhama will receive €8,000 for additional support packs for women seeking to exit prostitution, while the Men’s Development Network will get up to €39,340 for an extension of the Male Advice line, extra telephone support for the Men Ending Domestic Violence programme and to deliver a promotional campaign.

Launching the campaign, justice minister Charlie Flanagan said it was crucial to support people experiencing domestic abuse at a time when people have to stay at home.

"At a time when we have all been told to stay at home, I am very conscious that for victims of domestic abuse, home can be anything but a safe place. That is why I want victims to know that they will continue to receive the highest priority from the civil and criminal justice system throughout this crisis. I want perpetrators to know that too," he said.

An Garda Síochána has established ‘Operation Faoisimh’, a proactive initiative designed to ensure victims of domestic violence are supported and protected throughout this period.

The Legal Aid Board is giving priority to domestic violence and childcare cases, with every centre maintaining a phone line or email address for victims seeking supports.

A helpline has also been set up to ensure that persons experiencing domestic violence issues get prompt legal advice and legal representation in court where needed.

The Courts Service is giving priority to domestic violence and childcare cases, with every District continuing to have a Court open to hear applications for protection, interim barring and emergency barring orders.

Tusla has put a range of practical supports in place to ensure service provision is maintained.

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