Updated: 26/11/16 : 07:45:50
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Government must Ratify Convention on Violence Against Women – MEP

One of the most common features of the 28 member states of the European Union is how similar the statistics of violence against women are in the different countries.

This was stated by Sligo-based Independent MEP Marian Harkin when she called for the Irish government to move more quickly to ratify the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women (Istanbul Convention).

Speaking in the context of ‘International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women’ yesterday, Friday, November 25th, she said that  it was totally unacceptable that 1 in 3 women in the EU had experienced physical and/or sexual violence since the age of 15 while 75% of women in qualified professions or top management had experienced sexual harassment.

Ireland’s statistics were also horrifying including the murder of an 87 women and 14 of their children since 1996 while 1 in 7 women experienced severe domestic violence and 1 in 3 were being subjected to psychological violence, she stated.

“Women’s Aid does vital work providing advice and support for women subjected to violence and their 24 hour phone service has had to cope with an extra 2,000 out of hours calls since it commenced  in January”, the Independent MEP said.

The extra cost of that vital service needed to be fully financed by the government and this should be done in conjunction with the long overdue ratifying of the Istanbul Convention and increased focus by the government on the fact that 22,341 reports of abuse against women and children were made to Women’s Aid in 2015, Marian Harkin MEP concluded.