100 signatures reached
To: The Irish Government
Stop putting victims addresses on certain protection orders
The Victims Alliance is today calling on the government to change the current legislation which states that victim’s addresses appear on certain orders, which are then sent to perpetrators. The group is asking for change that will enable the victims to use the District Court as an address on all protective orders.
1 in 4 women and 1 in 20 men in Ireland have been abused by a current or former partner and in 2018, there were 1,138 admissions of women and 1,667 admissions of children to refuge in Ireland. (Safe Ireland Domestic Violence Services National Statistics 2018). 24% of women who contacted Women's Aid in 2019 disclosed that they were abused by an ex-spouse or partner. The types of abuse disclosed after the relationship has ended included: physical and sexual assaults, stalking, including being followed, harassed by phone calls, text messages or social networks, publicly humiliating the woman, and damage to her new partner, home and property.
Linda Hayden, founder of the Victims Alliance said: ‘If you have fled a domestic abuse situation and found a safe space to live, the last thing you want is a person who could potentially kill you having that address. We are pushing for a government-led campaign as it is simple to legislate for this change'
In order to have a fully preventative and protective system to ensure the full safety of victims of Domestic Violence, it is imperative that we ensure that their whereabouts is also protected. There is no point in having a system where we more or less hand the victims to the abusers on a plate. It is an issue that needs immediate attention.’
Why is this important?
Under the Domestic Violence Act 2018, there are three different orders that victims of abuse can apply at the District Court. These are; Barring Orders, Safety Orders, and Temporary Protection Orders. In many cases, the perpetrator must be notified of an order against them - either orally by the applicant or Gardaí, or they will be notified of the order by post. An order does not take effect until it is served to the respondent. In the case of a protection order, or an interim barring order, the court usually directs that order to be served on the respondent by An Garda Síochána. . The Orders that cause the most issue are Barring or Safety orders as these have both the victims and the abusers addresses on them.