Urgent need for new strategy to tackle domestic violence - McGahan
Sinn Féin MLA Bronwyn McGahan has said there is an urgent need for a new strategy to tackle domestic violence.
Ms McGahan said;
"I commissioned research into domestic violence in Fermanagh/South Tyrone, its impact and what can be done about it.
"The research shows there were 28,287 domestic abuse incidents and 13,426 domestic abuse crimes recorded in the North in 2014/15.
"In the Fermanagh/South Tyrone area there were 908 incidents of domestic abuse in Fermanagh and 658 incidents of domestic abuse in Dungannon and South Tyrone.
"In the same year, there were 409 domestic abuse crimes in Fermanagh and 331 domestic abuse crimes in Dungannon & South Tyrone.
"There is clearly a need for a new strategy to be put in place to combat domestic violence. The current action plan has been extended in the absence of a strategy and I would call on the health minister to bring forward a strategy as soon as possible.
"This is a cross-cutting issue and the Department of Justice will also have to implement the justice elements of the strategy.
"The research also shows that domestic violence costs the north £812 million with cases costing an average of £28,725.
"While the human cost of domestic violence is much greater, all of this highlights the urgent need to combat domestic violence.”