Cllr Rachel Woods slams recent domestic abuse statistics
Cllr Rachel Woods has reacted to recent PSNI figures showing increase of domestic abuse calls over Christmas.
The Green Party representative for Holywood and Clandeboye said, “We know that domestic abuse has been on the rise for a number of years, and shows no sign of slowing down. It is ever present, and when many of us are celebrating Christmas with our friends and family at home, many others are facing domestic abuse. Incidents recorded by the PSNI are only the tip of the iceberg, as they are only the incidents that are reported - many never make a call, or reach out.
Recent PSNI figures show that a total of 3,604 calls for help in relation to domestic abuse incidents were made over the Christmas period, and on Christmas Day, they received 110 calls in relation to domestic abuse, representing an increase of 10% from the same period last year. On New Year's Eve, the PSNI received 106 calls, an increase of 5% on the year before.
We need a Violence Against Women and Girls Strategy and we are still the only part of the UK without one. The Domestic Abuse, Stalking and Sexual Offences legislation passed last mandate will go some way, but we have much to do to identify and solve root causes and eradicate abuse from our society.
I’d encourage anyone who is a victim of domestic abuse or is concerned about someone who is to reach out for support and advice. There are many organisations that can help, such as Women’s Aid, Men’s Advisory Project, the 24 hour domestic and sexual abuse helpline, or the PSNI.”