Sinn Féin MLA Linda Dillon has encouraged victims of domestic abuse to continue to speak out and report it.
The Mid Ulster MLA was speaking after figures released from the PSNI revealed the highest number of domestic violence crimes in the north.
Linda Dillon said:
“Between July 2018 and June 2019, there were 16,575 domestic abuse crimes recorded and more must be done to combat the rate of domestic violence crimes.
“While the reporting of domestic abuse has increased the reality is that it is still an underreported crime and more is needed to support victims through the judicial process.
“The recommendations of Judge Gillen’s report need to be implemented to ensure victims are adequately supported.
“Domestic abuse is a terrifying and impactful crime and can take many forms, including financial and psychological abuse as well as physical and sexual violence.
“It is vitally important that anyone suffering from abuse whether physical or emotional knows that there are organisations, including the PSNI, Women’s Aid and Men’s Aid who are just a phone call away and ready to help. No one should suffer in silence.”