Lord mayor Gilliland helped launch a free 24-hour Dublin domestic abuse support helpline

Last weekend, Lord Mayor of Dublin Alison Gilliland helped launch a free 24-hour Dublin domestic abuse support helpline on behalf of Aoibhneas, a Dublin based domestic abuse support service for women and children.

From 2020, there was an evident increase in this kind of calls: 281 women and children had to be placed in emergency accommodation last year, with an overall number of 1,111 people seeking support from the charity. 85% of the charity’s clients experienced emotional abuse, while 67% of clients experienced physical abuse. 21% of those presenting at refuge centres arrived with physical injuries such as concussion, head trauma, broken bones, choking, bruising and cuts, reports Voonze.com.

CEO of Aoibhneas Emma Reidy said that the 24-hour helpline is extremely needed: “COVID-19 has necessitated changes in the way we engage family, friends, colleagues and neighbours, this in turn has exacerbated a feeling of isolation and disconnection for victims of coercive control and domestic abuse. We have been responding to escalating forms of abuse, due to a victim’s fear that by stepping outside their home they are exposed to a double risk – the risk of contracting COVID-19 and the risk their experiences of abuse will escalate by leaving the relationship or indeed the home. We are pleased to offer increased accessibility and visibility to victims and survivors of domestic abuse by launching our 24-hour freephone helpline today. Our ability to prioritise access to a freephone helpline in addition to enhanced visibility from our new community centres in Swords and Smithfield I hope will reassure women and children to come forward”.

The charity’s freephone helpline number is 1800 767 767.


Photo credit: Külli Kittus/Unsplash