The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre says there has been a 23% increase in the number of first-time callers to its helpline since 2010.
The centre claims this represents proof that sexual violence increases during recession.
In the centre's annual report for 2012, the centre reports that it dealt with over 12,000 calls last year and that it accompanied 260 victims of recent rape and assault to hospital for treatment.
The organisation also said that 54% of calls related to adult sexual violence, and 54% of clients were grown survivors of child sexual abuse.
Speaking at the launch of the report, the Minister for Justice Alan Shatter said new legislation on a DNA Database will be published in September, which will play an important role in solving sex crimes.
Minister Shatter says the database will be operational next year and will include the DNA profile of every person convicted of a crime that attracts a sentence of five years or more.
"I think we would all agree that rape and sexual assault are abhorrences that blight out country," he said.
"Your report gives interesting insights into the numbers you are dealing with, yet this remains an area of great concern and importance."
The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre has a 24-hour helpline number: 1800 77 8888