Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Wednesday, 3 November 2021

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality

Women's Shelters and Domestic Abuse Refuges: Discussion

Photo of Barry WardBarry Ward (Fine Gael) | Oireachtas source

I thank the witnesses. Many of us have heard the details of the crisis that exists but it is stark to hear from Ms Sherlock about a 43% increase in the number of people seeking help. It is really striking that however bad the Covid experience has been for many of us it has been worse for some of us. I am particularly struck by what Ms Graham said about having to refuse 369 requests. This is a shocking figure. I was not aware of how many counties were without refuges. Coming from Dún Laoghaire I am aware it does not have one. I would have thought we were the most populous area without one. It is something I have raised with the Minister. I know there was a review earlier this year and I am still not clear on what the outcome of it is. I am conscious of what Ms Bentley said about men being one in three of the victims and not seeking refuge. My question is for Ms Bentley. There is no male refuge anywhere in the country. Is this something we need to address? Does she feel it would be a useful tool in dealing with the requests for help she receives?


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