A shocking new survey says that one in four rapes or sexual assaults in Ireland took place in the family home – and one in three sexual attacks were carried out by a family member or relative.
The new statistics from 2010 have been published by the Rape Crisis Network and make for harrowing reading.
The report also states that family members were responsible for almost half of all sexual assaults on children.
Rape Crisis Network director Fiona Neary told the Irish Independent that most people are at ‘greater risk’ of rape or sexual violence within their ‘circle of trust’ than they were from strangers.
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“Coming into this Christmas season, women in particular will be warned to stay safe when they are out for the festivities. But the reality is that people are at far greater danger from those they already know,” she said.
Neary also commented on the Network’s finding that three in every 10 sexual attacks against adults were carried out by partners or ex-partners.
Director Neary added: “When we talk about sexual violence, it is time to switch the focus to the actions of the perpetrator.
“Therefore it is essential that we look at our relationships within our circles of trust.”