Monday 20 February 2017

Drink driving is no laughing matter - so our courts and media mustn't make it one

Published 17/06/2016 | 02:30

What sort of message are we sending out if a drunk driver is told his driving ban will be delayed so he can go to a matchmaking festival and find a woman? (Stock picture)
What sort of message are we sending out if a drunk driver is told his driving ban will be delayed so he can go to a matchmaking festival and find a woman? (Stock picture)

Sometimes the courts provide us with a window into Irish life and usually it's not a pretty sight. A report published this week by Women's Aid revealed very high levels of assaults within so-called loving relationships.

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Judges are all too familiar with this violence as victims come before them on a daily basis seeking barring orders and the protection of the courts from what is termed "domestic violence".

Until fairly recently because of the in camera rule, victims of such abuse and their children have been out of sight and out of mind, running away, going back, trying to keep their families together, hoping against hope that their abuser will change and no longer hit them.

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