Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Equality Fiona O’Loughlin TD has confirmed she will be bringing forward new legislation aimed at significantly increasing the supports in place for victims of domestic violence.

One of the key provisions of the legislation will be to ensure victims of domestic violence are given paid work leave to enable them to put in place practical measures to move on from a violent relationship. The legislation will mirror a new law recently introduced in New Zealand which extended paid leave to victims of domestic violence.

Deputy O’Loughlin, “Domestic violence continues to be a major issue in this country. A recent EU survey on violence against women has found that 6% of women have experienced sexual violence by a partner. 14% of women have also experienced physical violence by a partner while a further 31% of women have experienced psychological violence.

“Fianna Fáil worked with TD’s from across the Dáil to make progressive amendments to the Domestic Violence Act. The changes represent a more victim centred approach when prosecuting crimes relating to domestic violence. However I believe much more work needs to be done to ensure all women experiencing domestic violence are empowered to leave an abusive relationship and move on with their lives.

“New Zealand recently passed new legislation granting paid leave to domestic violence victims. Allowing victims leave enables them to put in place practical measures to get out of an abusive relationship such as moving house, settling children in a new school or seeking court approval for a barring, safety or protection order.

“I will be bringing forward new legislation after the summer recess aimed at introducing paid work leave for victims of domestic abuse in Ireland. I look forward to working with all TD’s in the Dáil in the coming months to get this sensible proposal across the line”, concluded Deputy O’Loughlin.