13 September 2007 Edition
McCann and Anderson challenge PSNI on Domestic Violence
Speaking to An Phoblacht after the meeting McCann, who represents West Belfast said, “today’s meeting was a frank and productive exchange on the issue of domestic violence”.
McCann is the party’s spokesperson on Women’s Issues while Anderson holds Sinn Féin’s Human Rights brief so for both women the issue of domestic and sexual violence is a priority issue.
“We impressed upon the PSNI that far reaching improvements right across the policing and judicial structures in dealing with domestic and sexual violence, particularly in relation to conviction rates and sentencing are needed”, stated McCann.
Both women stressed the need for the PSNI and the judiciary to tackle the issue given that the statistics from Women’s Aid indicate that 29% of murders in the Six Counties are cases of domestic violence and that one women per day suffers a serious assault at the hands of her partner.
The women pointed out that as conviction rates are very low in domestic violence cases and on occasions when perpetrators are convicted their sentences are very short women have very little confidence in the judicial process.
“The judicial process must be seen to working in the interests of women who suffer domestic and sexual violence. It is our job to monitor their performance and we will ensure that we do so”, stressed the Sinn Féin representatives.