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New Bill To Establish A Domestic, Sexual & Gender-Based Violence Agency.

  • New agency to drive and co-ordinate the Government’s response to domestic, sexual and gender-based violence, including refuge delivery
  • Position of CEO of new agency to be advertised within weeks
  • DSGBV Agency Bill to be taken in the Dáil by the end of the month
  • Agency to be up and running by January 2024

Government approval has been secured to publish a Bill to create a statutory agency dedicated to tackling and reducing domestic, sexual and gender-based violence (DSGBV) and support victims and survivors.

Government approval of the new Bill should see the new agency set up and running by the end of January 2024, with the position of CEO of the new agency to be advertised by the end of the month. Candidates for the position will have three weeks to submit their application to the Public Appointments Service (PAS) following the opening of the competition.

The Domestic, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence Agency Bill 2023 follows a Government decision that an agency should be established under the remit of the Department of Justice to deliver on commitments under Zero Tolerance, the Third National Strategy on DSGBV, with the Bill being introduced in the Dáil by the end of September 2023.

The new agency will bring the dedicated and expert focus that is needed to tackle the serious and complex societal problem of DSGBV. Its main functions as set out in the Bill include:

  • Planning, coordinating and monitoring the development of refuge accommodation.
  • Providing support, including financial assistance, for the delivery of services to victims and persons at risk of DSGBV.
  • Developing standards for funded services, and monitoring compliance.
  • Co-ordinating the delivery of relevant Government strategies and plans.
  • Delivering public campaigns aimed at raising awareness of DSGBV and reducing its prevalence.
  • Carrying out ongoing research to support the development of future policies and programmes.

In carrying out its work, the agency will also be mandated to engage and consult appropriately with the DSGBV sector and other stakeholders.

The Bill has already benefited from constructive engagement with relevant Government Departments and State bodies, in particular with the Department of Children, Equality, Integration and Youth and the Child and Family Agency (Tusla) in the context of the transfer of responsibility for funding of DSGBV services from Tusla to the new agency.

The agency will be led by a chief executive to be recruited by open competition, with strategic guidance and oversight from a non-executive board with expertise in relation to DSGBV, organisational management and governance, and other matters relevant to the functions of the agency.
The chief executive will be responsible to the Dept. of Justice for the performance of the agency.

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