Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees
Wednesday, 19 February 2014
Joint Oireachtas Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality
Domestic and Sexual Violence: Discussion
Given what people have said about nobody having joined-up thinking and looking at the impact of immigration law, housing law and criminal law, it would seem sensible to have one body. I thank Ms Byrne for that response.
My second question is to Sonas and to Ms Wilson from the Domestic Violence Advocacy Service on the issue of housing and this critical issue of where the victims of abuse - women and children - go. Clearly, there is a shortfall in emergency refuge provision but, as Ms Byrne said and I think we would all agree, that should only be short-term and nobody should be stuck in that accommodation. Where do women and children go? I understand they go into homeless services. Will the changes being made by the Department of Social Protection to give responsibility for the allocation of the housing supplement to the local authorities improve things? We heard there is a real difficulty for a woman who jointly owns a family home. Should barring orders not kick in at that point so that the woman can move back into her home?