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Domestic, Sexual & Gender Based Violence

On this month’s Crimecall, Detective Chief Superintendent Colm Noonan of the Garda National Protective Services Bureau delivered a message to all victims of Domestic, Sexual and Gender based violence, DSGBV, which essentially indicates that An Garda Síochána is committed to protecting and supporting all victims and ensuring that keeping people safe and safeguarding human rights are central to the work being carried out.  

An Garda Síochána recognises the harm that is being done to individuals, to families and to our society due to domestic, sexual and gender based violence, and wants to reiterate the point that nobody should have to live with violence, abuse or the threat or fear of violence. 

An Garda Síochána wants to reassure people that they will work exceptionally hard and in a professional, dedicated and consistent way to try and reduce Domestic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence and that in the future this behaviour will not be tolerated and is never again unspoken. 

Advice to victims

  • o We need all victims to come forward and to keep talking to us so if you are a victim of Domestic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence, please make contact with An Garda Síochána
  • o If you are in immediate fear, living in fear or if you feel under threat in any circumstance, please call 999 or 112.
  • o If you know of a family member or friend who is a victim of such abuse, please make contact with An Garda Síochána.
  • o Then we can and we will do everything in our power to pursue those persons who harm others.
  • o Victims of Domestic Sexual and Gender Based Violence, be they women or men, deserve and are entitled to the very best efforts from An Garda Síochána.
  • o Offenders will be investigated, they will be prosecuted and brought before the courts.
  • o We hear what victims are saying and we are and always will be here to listen and to act. 

What we are doing

An Garda Síochána’s response to all victims has been the launch of “Operation Faoiseamh” which has resulted in:

  • o 45,283 contacts and attempted contacts with victims of domestic abuse have taken place since the commencement of Operation Faoiseamh on 1 April 2020 to 7 January 2022.An Garda Síochána responded to in excess of 48,400 Domestic Abuse Incidents in 2021, 10% increase on 2020. 
  • o An Garda Síochána preferred in excess of 4,250 Criminal Charges for breaches of Domestic Violence Act Orders in 2021, a 6% increase on 2020. 
  • o An Garda Síochána preferred in excess of 8,600 Criminal charges for crimes involving an element of domestic abuse in 2021, up 13% on 2020 
  • o Divisional Protective Service Units (DPSU) are now established and well embedded in every Garda Division with 392 people assigned to those units on a full time basis investigating these crimes and supporting frontline uniform and detective units 
  • o We have engaged, contributed and are committed to the forthcoming Department of Justice Third National Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender based violence,(DSGBV) which will focus on Prevention, Protection, Prosecution and Policy Co-ordination to tackle elements of DSGBV. 
  • o We have and continue to build exceptional good and productive relationships with our partners both inside and outside of the Criminal Justice system 
  • o But we know that we are not perfect – Everybody working in An Garda Síochána must understand the vulnerability of victims. Our attitudes and behaviour towards vulnerable people must be exceptional – we are training and working hard to increase that awareness and embed the necessary behaviour. 
  • o Our goal and everybody’s goal must be to eliminate all forms of violence against victims – this will save lives. 

Role of society

  • o There is a role for society. Stopping Inappropriate behaviour is an area where society will have to come together to eradicate it.
  • o We in An Garda Síochána will deal with the criminal aspect but to truly eradicate this violence, we need the assistance, experience and expertise that exists in society and in the exceptional support groups which are out there.
  • o Everyone must face up and speak up to change society’s attitudes and to Increase awareness around these crimes.
  • o Ultimately this will create a society where Domestic, Sexual & Gender Based Violence is completely unacceptable. 
Womens Aid 1800 341 900 
Men’s Development Network 1800 816588 
Mens Aid (01) 554 3811