Graphic Logo for COSC depicting a harp and text

The National Office for the Prevention of Domestic, Sexual and Gender-based Violence.

An Oifig Náisiúnta um Fhoréigean Baile, Gnéasach agus Inscnebhunaithe a Chosc

  1. European Study Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) Report Violence Against Women Across the EU: Abuse at home, Work, in public and online

European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) Report Violence Against Women Across the EU: Abuse at home, work, in public and online


On 5th of March, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) launched the results of the biggest ever violence against women survey in the EU. The main objective of the study is the production of reliable and comparable primary data on women’s experiences of violence, for the first time covering the entire EU. A national expert from Cosc attended the launch in Brussels.

The survey findings are based on face-to-face interviews with 42,000 randomly selected women (approximately 1,500 per country) aged 18-74 years, across the EU’s 28 Member States. Using a standardised interview questionnaire, women were asked about their experiences of physical, sexual and psychological violence, including incidents of intimate partner violence (‘domestic violence’) as well as the consequences of such violence, and their experience of services contacted. The survey also covered experiences of stalking, sexual harassment, their childhood experiences of violence, and the role played by new technologies in women’s experiences of abuse. Initial analysis highlighted notable differences in the Irish experience compared to the EU average follows.

Figures for Ireland and (EU average)

Physical, Sexual and Psychological Violence
 According to the study fewer Irish women surveyed experienced sexual violence by a partner or a non-partner since the age of 15 (8% of Irish women surveyed compared to an EU average of 11% of women surveyed).
 Fewer Irish women surveyed experienced a number of constituents of domestic abuse by a partner compared to the EU average and are among the lowest in Europe
o Psychological violence (31% compared to 43%).
o Controlling behaviour (23% compared to 35%).
o Economic violence (10% compared to 12%).
o Abusive behaviour (24% compared to 32%).
 More Irish women contacted the police as a result of violence compared to the EU average
o by a partner (21% compared to 14%), or .
o by a non-partner (16% compared to 13%).

Violence in Childhood
 Fewer girls in Ireland experienced physical or sexual violence before the age of 15 compared with the EU average (26% compared with 33%).
 The categories of perpetrators of physical violence against girls before the age of 15 in Ireland was not typical of the EU average with
o Fewer fathers, step or foster fathers (23% of cases of physical violence compared with 58%)
o More male teachers, doctors or priests (13% of cases compared with 6%) and
o More female acquaintances, friends or neighbours (17% of cases compared with 4%).

Opinions, Attitudes and Awareness

 More women in Ireland perceived the frequency of violence against women to be "very common" when compared to the EU average (33% compare with 27%).
 A greater number of women reported knowing a victim of domestic violence in their family or circle of friends (41% compared with 39%).
 Fewer women reported being aware of laws and political initiatives to prevent domestic violence against women (42% compared with 49%).

For a copy of the full report click here