Rise in domestic violence crime
DOMESTIC violence culprits are facing a clampdown by Gardaí, Chief Superintendent John Roche warned at the meeting.
Supt Roche acknowledged that Gardaí were not proactive enough in tackling domestic violence in the past, but this has changed now.
Senator Michael D'Acry Jnr raised the issue, describing domestic violence as the 'big elephant' in Irish society.
'It's the great unspoken in terms of what is happening in society. Up to one in three experience domestic violence.'
Calling for a presentation on the issue at the next Joint Policing Committee meeting in October, he asked for a breakdown of the figures of detections for the offence at every meeting.
'On too many occasions people come to my office and women tell me that the Gardaí say they can't do anything it as it's before the courts.'
Supt Roche said civilian staff members will be manning the new Victim Support Unit which will be carrying out follow up calls to victims of domestic violence.
'Victims should be a central part of our policing strategy. We received severe criticisms in the recent Inspectorate's Report and domestic violence has now been put to the top of the agenda. Now there is a strict call back policy for victims and a pro charge policy in relation to the culprits of domestic violence but we do need complainants to come forward and we offer advice as to the various orders in the district court. There are sometimes delays in getting these orders. I agree it's the elephant in the room.'
Supt Roche said assaults are increasingly taking place in the home as opposed to in nightclubs and on the streets, adding that public order crime is down. He said there are 28 civilian staff across the county supporting superintendents, inspectors and Gardaí on the ground and they will run the Victim Support Unit and make contact with victims of domestic abuse in County Wexford.