Thursday 19 September 2019

'Very, very worrying' - young Irish women report rapes every 48 hours on foreign holidays

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)

Ralph Riegel

YOUNG Irish women have reported rapes on average every 48 hours while on foreign holidays.

The shock revelation came as one Irish sexual violence centre urged young Irish women heading to sun spots and so-called party destinations to exercise maximum caution and not to be too trusting of people just because they come from the same background and speak the same language.

Cork Sexual Violence Centre (CSVC) revealed to Cork's RedFM that they have dealt with six reported rapes in the space of less than a fortnight.

All the reported sexual assaults occurred at overseas holiday destinations - and all involved women aged in their teens and early 20s.

The revelation came as it emerged Spanish police were also investigating the alleged rape last month of a young Irish man in a beach resort.

CSVC Mary Crilly said it was very worrying to see such a concentration of reported rapes involving foreign holidays in such a short space of time.

Ms Crilly said the women were very distressed by what had happened to them.

Several were on their first overseas holiday without parental supervision.

It is understood that all six separate incidents involved alleged assaults carried out by English-speaking young men who the women had met on their holiday.

None of the incidents are alleged to have involved men native to holiday destination - but all alleged assaults were apparently carried out by fellow holidaymakers, either Irish or UK nationals.

All the assailants involved were young men.

"It is very, very worrying," Ms Crilly said.

"We have never experienced anything like this before. So it is a matter of serious concern."

The aftermath of the assaults are traumatic for the young women who are often confused, ashamed and worried about their family learning of what happened.

"It is not their fault - that is the awful part because they tend to blame themselves."

Ms Crilly said it was clear that greater education was needed to remind young Irish and UK men about what is unacceptable.

"There seems to be a belief that they can somehow get away with something like this because it happened in a holiday destination."

Ms Crilly warned that such predatory sexual behaviour cannot be tolerated no matter where it occurred.

It is understood that a number of the women did not lodge formal complaints about the alleged assaults with local police.

  • If you have been affected by any of the issue raised in this article you can contact the Rape Crisis Centre on their 24 Hour Helpline on 1800 778888 or visit www.rapecrisishelp.ie

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