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Budget cutbacks force domestic abuse victims ‘home’

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Photo: Flickr/Sugarsnaptaste

A shocking number of domestic violence victims are returning to their abusive partners due to a huge shortage in emergency refuge support in the Dublin area, according to a spokesperson for Women’s Aid Dublin.

This year’s budget saw no increased support for domestic violence services and emergency refuge accommodation as Minister for Health James Reilly failed to provide any extra funding.

As a result, Women’s Aid Dublin are now turning victims away due to a shortage of resources and finance and with a lack of alternatives many of the victims are returning home to their abuser.

“Two out of three women who access domestic abuse services, and request crisis accommodation, have to return home to their abuser because there is no housing available. The Council of Europe specify that there should be one refuge space per ten thousand head of population,” said a spokesperson for Women’s Aid.

“We’re operating at 38 per cent below the recommended level, behind countries such as Bosnia-Herzegovina, where woman are seen as second class citizens. An emergency refuge in Wexford had to close down for 13 weeks because they had run out of funding.”

Despite the ongoing issue, no budget funding has been allocated to help those in need of emergency accommodation.

Lack of emergency housing means that people who are already vulnerable are either having to stay in a house that is not safe, or try and find emergency housing in another county.

Women’s Aid have expressed their concerns regarding the affect this has on victims of domestic abuse.

“If women experience domestic violence within the home and are turned away when seeking help, it is very unlikely that they will return in the future,” according to the spokesperson.

 

Image: By Sugarsnaptaste

 

 

 

 

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