• By Admin

Launch of Dublin Rape Crisis Centre’s Annual Report and Statistics 2008.
Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

Disturbing Trends in Increase in Sexual Violence

  • 51% of clients raped or sexually assaulted by a stranger (14% increase in 5 year period 2003-8)
  • 38% of clients reported physical violence, psychological abuse and intimidation in addition to the rape or sexual assault (5% increase on 2007 figures)
  • 284 victims of rape and sexual assault were accompanied by DRCC’s trained volunteers at the Sexual Assault Treatment Unit
  • 20% increase in the number of clients attending the DRCC for childhood sexual abuse in the five year period since 2003
  • 27% of calls to national 24-Hour Helpline from outside Dublin, an increase of 4% compared to 2007
  • 8% of calls from non-Irish nationals, an increase of 2.3% since 2007

Victims showed increasing willingness to report recent rape or sexual assault by persons known to them, contrary to previous trends. In 2008, 44% of clients who experienced recent rape or sexual assault by a known assailant reported to the Gardai, compared to 40% of clients raped by a stranger.

Today, Brendan Spring, Chairman of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, introduced its Annual Report and Annual Statistics 2008 and said “The analysis of the DRCC’s 2008 statistics and commentary make for grim reading. I found it most disturbing that 38% of our clients in 2008 told their therapists that, in addition to sexual violence, they had experienced various other types of abuse, including physical violence, attempts to kill and torture.”

Contact with the National 24-Hour Helpline for Rape and Sexual Abuse

The statistics showed that:

  • The National 24-hour Helpline dealt with 12,741 calls (78 calls were received in 1979 when the Helpline started 30 years ago.)
  • 9,487 of these calls were genuine counselling calls
  • 2,959 of these calls were from first time callers
  • 3,386 were from repeat callers.
  • 73% of calls were from the Dublin and greater Dublin area, while 27% were from areas outside Dublin. This represents an increase of 4% in calls from outside the Dublin area compared to 2007 statistics
  • 86% of calls were from females and 14% from males
  • Calls were equally divided between Childhood Sexual abuse (45.06%) and Adult Rape (44.95%)
  • Calls related to Adult Rape showed an increase of 2.32% since 2007
  • There was an overall increase of 2% in adult sexual violence ( combining rape, sexual assault, drug rape and sexual harassment) compared with 2007 figures.
  • 8% of callers were non-Irish nationals, an increase of 2.3% compared to 2007. As there was already an increase of 2.2% in calls from non-nationals in 2007 compared to 2006 figures, this means that there has been an increase of 4.5% in calls from non-nationals over the period 2006-8. Calls were received from people of 51 different nationalities, compared to 31 nationalities in 2007, an increase of 64.5% in nationalities.
  • Callers’ countries of origin included 21 European countries, 13 African countries, Australia, New Zealand, U.S.A, Canada, South America, Asia and China.
  • 512 callers (5.4%) reported experiencing other types of violence/abuse in addition to being raped, sexually assaulted as adults or sexually abused as children. This was an increase on the 2007 figure of 0.7%. Of this group of clients, two thirds had been raped or sexually assaulted, while one-third had experienced childhood sexual abuse.

Sexual Assault Treatment Unit (SATU) Accompaniment Services

  • DRCC’s trained Volunteers accompanied 284 victims to the SATU in the Rotunda Hospital.

Ellen O’Malley-Dunlop, Chief Executive of the DRCC said “We welcome the opening of the new SATU in Mullingar which we hope will make it easier for victims of sexual violence in the midlands to seek help, without having to travel to Dublin. It is shocking to think that in Dublin alone, 284 people were accompanied to the Sexual Assault treatment Unit in the Rotunda in 2008. This figure is the third highest number of accompaniments we have recorded to date, and represents a 39% increase in the 5 years since 2003, and an 80% increase compared to 2001.

Over the past number of years we have observed an increase in sexual violence. This year we are highlighting a worrying increase in rape by strangers – now 51% of all rapes experienced by our clients. Our statistics record a 14% increase in rape by strangers since 2003. In addition we are concerned by a disturbing trend in the levels of physical violence, intimidation and psychological violence accompanying sexual violence or childhood sexual abuse. This year 38% of the clients seen at the centre reported experiencing such additional violence, an increase of 5% since 2007.”

Counselling and Psychotherapy Services

Client profile

  • 580 clients were seen for crisis counselling and psychotherapy. Of these 13 % were men and 87% were women. The number of male clients increased by 2% compared to 2007 figures
  • 45% of clients were dealing with childhood sexual abuse (CSA), an increase of 2% on 2007 figures.
  • Overall, the number of clients attending for childhood sexual abuse has increased by 20% in the five year period since 2003
  • 45% of clients had also experienced adult rape: an increase of 1% on 2007 figures
  • Overall, 55% of clients were dealing with sexual violence in adulthood, including rape, sexual assault, sexual harassment and drug rape
  • In 2008, the ratio of clients dealing with CSA versus adult sexual violence is 45:55 or 9:11. In 2003, it was 35:65 or 7:13 or almost 1:2. The gap has narrowed from 2003 when there were almost twice as many clients dealing with adult sexual violence as CSA to 2008 when the ratio has narrowed to 9:11 or 1:1.2
  • 38% of clients reported experiencing other types of violence along with adult rape or childhood abuse, an increase of 5% on 2007 figures. Of these clients, 41% had been abused as children and 59% had experienced sexual violence as an adult
  • Physical violence, psychological abuse and intimidation accounted for 74% of the additional violence/abuse reported by clients who had experienced adult rape/sexual assault and 89% of the additional violence/abuse experienced by victims of childhood sexual abuse
  • There was an increase of 2.4% in rape by strangers in 2008. In 2008, 50.66% of clients disclosed rape or sexual assault by a stranger, compared to 48.26% in 2007. As there was already an increase of 8.9% in 2007 compared to 2006, this gives an increase of 11.3% in 2008 compared to 2006. There has been a 14% increase in rape by strangers since 2003

Service delivery

  • DRCC’s therapists delivered 3,704 client sessions in 2008. 648 client group therapy hours were delivered, an increase of 20% on 2007. Thus, a total of 4352 individual and group client hours were delivered in 2008
  • 81% of clients resided in the greater Dublin area, while 19% resided in 16 other counties. Clients were from 39 nationalities, an increase of 39% on 2007 figures
  • The DRCC has shown its commitment to outreaching to local communities, through the establishment of its outreach services in Coolock, the Dochas Women’s Prison and Tallaght. 15% of clients in 2008 came from the counties within easy access to our outreach counselling services in Coolock and Tallaght i.e Kildare, Meath, Wicklow and Louth
  • A pilot project to establish a DRCC outreach for people stabilised on methadone, in partnership with Tallaght Rehabilitation Project (TRP), was set in motion in 2008 and is due to open in the summer of 2009
  • In Coolock, the existing Outreach Counselling Service was expanded by doubling the number of therapists involved to four and providing an increased service of three days a week -Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The service is used by clients from north Dublin, but also from adjoining counties, such as Kildare, Louth, and Meath
  • The Outreach counselling service in Tallaght which opened on July 28th 2007 was expanded in 2008, when the number of staff involved was increased from two to three, to ensure eight sessions are available each Saturdays. 160 sessions were delivered, (a take-up rate of 76%). This represents a trebling of the service’s session capacity, compared to 2007. Clients attend from Tallaght and adjoining areas, but also from Wicklow and Kildare.

Reporting to the Gardai

Statistics provided in this section relate to 336 clients who commenced therapy in the DRCC in 2008, where the reporting status was known. It is worth noting that reporting and convictions in this context refer to clients seen by our service in the year 2008, although the reports and convictions have occurred in previous years.

  • Of the 329 cases where the reporting status was known, 92 cases were reported to the Gardai, a reporting rate of 28%.
  • 37% of total rape and sexual assault cases were reported.
  • 12.% of the total childhood sexual abuse cases were reported
  • 4 cases were tried, resulting in 4 convictions.
  • A new trend was noted of increased reporting of recent rape, committed by persons known to the victim.

For further information please contact:
Ellen O’Malley-Dunlop, CEO – 01 661 4911 / 086 809 9618

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