Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Sex attacks warning for revellers

A rape crisis centre has issued a warning to new year revellers to keep safe

New year revellers are being warned to beware of sexual predators on nights out.

Dublin Rape Crisis Centre (DRCC) said eight out of 10 victims are raped by someone known to them, and it urged men and women to trust their instincts if uncomfortable in a particular place or with someone.

Last year 1,784 calls were made to DRCC's national 24-hour helpline during December and January.

Chief executive Ellen O'Malley-Dunlop revealed that 31 people were accompanied to the Sexual Assault Treatment Unit (Satu) in the Rotunda Hospital as recently as October.

"These figures are very worrying," she said.

"We know that the levels of domestic and sexual violence escalate during recession times. This is borne out by the numbers of people we are accompanying to Satu in the Rotunda."

She said the helpline - 1800 77 88 88 - offers a safe and confidential space where women and men of all ages can be listened to and supported without shame or self-blame.

Men and women are advised to look out for each other, stay with their group, keep their drink in their hand at all times and share taxis home.

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