Sinn Féin spokesperson on Workers’ Rights, Louise O’Reilly TD, has urged the government to deliver on their commitments to tackle violence against women and girls.
Speaking today, Teachta O’Reilly said:
“Violence against women and girls, and the fear of it, is far too common and casts a dark shadow across the lives of women and girls. Violence against women is an epidemic in our society. It exists in our families, in our homes, in our communities and in our schools; right across society. We have the right to be safe on our streets and in our homes. Yet too often, we are not.
“Next week will mark two years since this government came to power. Despite their many promises, they have failed to show the urgency needed to implement real and lasting change in tackling this violence.
“In their programme for government, the coalition pledged to look at introducing paid leave for survivors of domestic violence. Despite this, they have failed to do so. I have written this legislation, brought it before the Dáil, secured cross party endorsement at Committee as well as from domestic violence services, trade unions and employers. The government must end their delay and work with me to progress this legislation so that women can access this urgent entitlement.
“I am deeply frustrated by the Government’s delay in finalising the Third Strategy on Domestic, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence. I am today urging the Minister to publish the updated Strategy.
“I am also concerned that the review into Domestic Violence Homicide Reviews, as is already in place in the north, still has yet to be completed. It was promised in 2017 under then Minister Charlie Flanagan but still has yet to be delivered.
“The long-term effects of coercive control, abuse and violence for women and their children is devastating. This lived reality is what makes the Government’s glacial pace of delivery on DSGBV commitments so enraging for victims, survivors, their advocates and services. Long-fingered announcements will not keep women and their children safe. We need to see a rapid step change from the Government not only on outstanding commitments but on its international obligations under the Istanbul Convention.
“Sinn Féin will work with all parties to ensure that key commitments on ending violence against women and girls are delivered.”