[Brussels, 10 May 2013] Every fifth women in Europe has been subjected to male domestic violence (EWL, ‘Unveiling the hidden data on domestic violence in the EU’, 1999). “Reports of domestic abuse in Northern Ireland have increased by almost 1,200 in six months. There were 13,558 alleged incidents between April and September compared with 12,364 for the same period last year.” The Irish Times cites the Police Service of Northern Ireland numbers. Reinforced cooperation between the PSNI and Women’s Aidworkers at specialist police units launched a number of initiatives during the year. An advertising campaignincorporating radio, billboard and Facebook advertising published the Women’s Aid 24-hour domestic abuse helplinephone number 0800 917 1414 launched in December 2012.
EWL fully supports Northern Ireland’s initiatives tackling male violence in the family sphere.
During the Northern Ireland delegation visit to Brussels, EWL had an opportunity to meet the representatives of Women’s Aid (a member of the UK National Coordination of the European Women’s Lobby) and discuss the possibilities for an effective cooperation (read our article on the meeting).
“Male domestic violence tends to be the norm and not the exception; it has direct impact on the health and well-being of women and impacts on women’s performance in the work place, threatening their employment status. Male violence against women is a contributing factor to the feminisation of poverty as women experience a drop in income after separation. Male violence against women in the couple or the family is one of the causes of suicide among women and continues to threaten the life and well-being of women even after they leave the abusive environment.” (European Women’s Lobby Position Paper on Violence against Women)