Barriers faced by victims of sexual violence significantly higher for LGBT people – Senator Warfield
Senator Fintan Warfield has commented on a Rape Crises Network of Ireland report titled ‘Finding a Safe Space - LGBT survivors of sexual violence and disclosure in Rape Crisis Centres’.
The Sinn Féin spokesperson on LGBTQI rights, the arts and youth affairs said that the report highlighted the need for hate crime legislation in an effort to address racism, sectarianism and homophobia in Irish society.
Senator Warfield said:
“This is a critical piece of expert information and research and I commend the work of the Rape Crisis Network Ireland, who alongside GLEN and Gay Switchboard have highlighted the added vulnerability and exclusion faced by members of the LGBT community who are victims and survivors of sexual violence.
“All victims of sexual violence face enormous barriers when contacting support services. It is critical that we take into account that for LGBTQI people, those barriers can be significantly greater. 47% of LGB survivors waited over ten years to report abuse in comparison to 21% of heterosexual survivors.
“To support better public policy, it is critical that we possess such diligently recorded information and I commend the work of the Rape Crisis Network Ireland and their partners for this report; GLEN and Gay Switchboard Ireland.
“Sinn Féin have made a commitment to enact the ICCL’s Criminal Law (Hate Crime) Amendment Bill 2015, to address racism, sectarianism and homophobia in Irish society, legislation that would also encourage reporting amongst LGBT victims of sexual violence, fuelled by homophobia and transphobia.”