Clare Haven says it is essential that a full range of services are made available under the new zero tolerance strategy on domestic, sexual and gender-based violence and not just on beds.
It includes prison terms of up to 10 years for domestic abusers and increased prevention training.
The new zero tolerance strategy will see a budget of €363 million spread over five years, under four pillars – protection, prevention, prosecution and policy coordination.
Changes to the laws will include a doubling of the maximum sentence for causative assault from 5 to 10 years.
While the number of places available in women’s shelters will increase from 141 to 280.
However, this remains below the additional 340 places needed to comply with the Istanbul Convention.
Clare Haven Services director Dr Siobhán O’Connor described the strategy as a breakthrough, which makes up for the failures of the last one, but she says victims need a full range of services, not just beds .
The plan also provides for the creation of a specific statutory agency.
Rape Crisis Midwest Executive Director Miriam Duffy believes this will be the key bedding in the new strategy.
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