How common is domestic abuse?
Unfortunately, domestic abuse is more common than people realise. It is often a hidden human rights violation and is a crime that can be difficult to accurately quantify. This is evident when assessing the range of abuse individuals may have endured and the amount of people have endured it. Some of the reasons why the impact of domestic abuse is challenging to calculate is that it mainly occurs within the home and often people don’t report or disclose the abuse.
Some of the findings from the research into the prevalence of domestic abuse in Ireland:
- It is estimated that 1 in 5 women in Ireland have been abused by a former or current partner. (O’ Connor, M., Kelleher Associates & Women’s Aid, 1995)
- 14% of women in Ireland have experienced physical violence by a partner since age 15.
- 6% of women in Ireland have experienced sexual violence by a former or current partner.
- 31 % of women in Ireland have experienced psychological violence by a partner.
- 12% of women in Ireland have experienced stalking.
- In 2018, 9,971 women and 2,572 children were accommodated or received support from a domestic violence service.
- For women aged 15-44 worldwide, acts of violence cause more death and disability than cancer, malaria, traffic accidents, and war combined (Violence Against Women: A Priority Health Issue, 1997)
- Only 29% of women who had experienced severe abuse had reported it to An Garda Síochána. (National Crime Council and ESRI, Domestic Abuse of Women and Men in Ireland, 2005).
- 1 in 7 women in Ireland compared to 1 in 17 men experience severe domestic violence. Women are over twice as likely as men to have experienced severe physical abuse, seven times more likely to have experienced sexual abuse, and are more likely to experience serious injuries than men. (National Crime Council and ESRI, Domestic Abuse of Women and Men in Ireland, 2005)
- Domestic violence has a higher rate of repeat victimisation than any other type of crime. (2000 British Crime Survey: England and Wales. Home Office 2001)