Of the 204 women murdered in Ireland since 1996, 78 women (53% of resolved cases) were killed by those closest to them - a current or former husband, partner or boyfriend. That is 1 in every 2 women killed in Ireland by a current or former intimate partner where the case has been resolved.
Threats to kills and attempts to kill are a common feature of domestic violence and leave many women living in a constant state of fear. The tragic reality is that some women pay the ultimate price of their lives.
Research conducted in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK has found that killing by a partner is the form of homicide which most women are most at risk of.
Leaving or threats of leaving have been cited in many studies as the event that provokes a violent response surmising that the male partner is threatened by the loss of control and will stop at nothing to resume that control, including murder.
Homicide rates are higher for women who have separated than they are for women in intact relationships, with these fatalities tending to occur in the immediate aftermath of separation.
Last week, Women’s Aid held a minute’s silence outside Dáil Éireann to remember the 78 women and the 10 children killed alongside their mother.
At the event, Women’s Aid called for increased recognition and management of risk factors that lead to intimate partner homicide as part of an improved response to domestic abuse by the State and its agencies.
We also called for recent promised changes to be realised, properly resourced and implemented with tangible, long lasting safe outcomes for women and children at risk from abuse.
Memoriam cards remembering the 78 women have been distributed to politicians, media, domestic and sexual violence services and other organisations nationwide as part of our Remembering Stolen Lives action during the 16 Days campaign 2014.