One-stop shop to help abuse victims
A 'One-Stop Shop' providing services to victims of sexual assault, domestic violence and other forms of abuse is urgently needed, Justice Minister Dermot Ahern said last night.
Speaking at the launch of a five-year government action plan on the issue, the minister said he fully supported a recommendation to create a single body combining government departments, independent and state agencies to provide a wide range of services to victims.
"Sometimes the level of response is not as good as it should be in one sector whereas it's good in another," he said.
He was speaking at the launch of a strategy paper on gender-based violence at Dublin Castle yesterday by Cosc, the National Office for the Prevention of Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence.
"Sometimes it depends on the type of individuals (that victims) meet," he said.
"A one-stop shop is vitally important so that people who get into this difficulty know how to access all the services."
Fiona Neary, Director of the Rape Crisis Network Ireland (RCNI), the umbrella group for Ireland's rape crisis centres, said: "Achieving real change to make Ireland a safer country involves the efforts of many layers of State and society."