Police received 80 reports of domestic violence per day last year
PSNI received in the region of 80 reports of domestic violence each day over the last year in N. Ireland, a conference has heard.
The Domestic Abuse, Violence, Safety Conference was organised by La Dolce Vita Project, an organisation founded by a local survivor of domestic abuse.
Delegates at the conference in the City Hotel, heard from representatives of the Policing and Community Safety Partnership, including chair, Sandra Duffy and manager, Dermot Harrigan.
Mr Harrigan gave a presentation on the services offered by the PCSP and focused on how it could support and improve the safety of victims.
Delegates also heard from the director of Family Mediation N.I. Joan Davis explained the services it provides across all five Trust areas in the north and described how it supported clients. She also highlighted the impact on those who had been involved in court process who have no contact or limited contact with their children.
Two victims bravely shared their harrowing experience of domestic and sexual violence.
The founder of LDVP, Donna Maria Logue, also gave a presentation on maintaining the safety of clients, with a particular focus on parental alienation.
The conference was opened by the Mayor of Derry & Strabane Council Michaela Boyle.
The Sinn Fein councillor has said on a number of occasions that supporting victims of domestic violence will be one of her top priorities during her term as mayor.
She told the conference: “Escaping domestic violence is a traumatic and emotional process, especially when children and the courts are involved. It can be a daunting experience for the victims and their families.
“Protecting and support ing victims of domestic and sexual crime means there needs to be appropriate refuge provision and wrap around services involving the PSNI, social services, the courts and justice system. Women need to know they are being listened to and taken seriously as they go through the process.”
Julie Smyth-Leddy chair, of La Dolce Vita Project, revealed that over 31,000 reports of domestic violence were made to police inNorthern Ireland last year.
“We at LDVP, and other agencies, work tirelessly to highlight the need of the voices of those impacted to be heard and for legislative changes.
Our focus is that through a collective agency approach we can combat domestic violence, not only by assisting those impacted but by campaigning for social and legislative change and educating the community at large.