Frontline services in Donegal combating domestic, sexual and gender-based violence are to receive funding of €253,000 to support their services this year, Fine Gael election candidates have said.
The funding is part of a €1.5 million in extra support for services nationally this year.
Council candidate for the Milford Electoral Area, Eimer Friel, said: "The Government is committed to tackling sexual violence in Ireland and providing strong supports for victims. This extra funding across the country – including for here in County Donegal – is most welcome today. It will help support the work of counsellors particularly in rural communities here."
Ms Friel said that it was vital that those suffering domestic, sexual and gender based violence receive the frontline services they need and that those who perpetrate such crimes are pursued to the fullest extent of the law.
Evelyn Sweeney, the Fine Gael candidate in Glenties Electoral Area, said: “The Government ratified the Istanbul Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence on March 8 which is International Women’s Day.
“The Convention creates a legal framework and approach to combat violence against women and is focused on preventing domestic violence, protecting victims and prosecuting accused offenders.
“I am pleased to see the Donegal Sexual Abuse & Rape Crisis Centre receive increased funding of €253,000 this year to continue its vital work. This is an increase on last year and an increase on the €168,000 funding in 2017.”
Eimer Friel paid particular tribute to Minister Katherine Zappone for her continued support for local and national services.
Minister Zappone said: "As Minister I have seen at first hand the invaluable work of frontline agencies supporting women and children targeted by domestic, sexual and gender based violence. I have also listened to the voices of those forced out of their homes by threats, abuse and violence.
"Their views have informed the decisions which have been taken in order to provide better information, supports and protections. With the increase in funding we will address shortfalls and gaps in services which have been identified.
"We all have a role to play in ensuring the safety of those forced to flee an abusive partner, often with their children. The funding I am now confirming is being directly targeted at frontline services.”