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New Domestic Violence Refuge in Wexford to Commence Construction

The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien, and Minister for Justice, Helen McEntee, have announced funding approval of over €6.4 million for a new Domestic Violence Refuge in Wexford.

The project, which is being advanced by Wexford Women’s Refuge in co-operation with Wexford County Council, has now received final funding approval and completed the tender process. Construction on the new 13 unit Domestic Violence Refuge is expected to commence before the end of 2022, with an estimated completion date in early 2024.

The Third National Domestic, Sexual, and Gender Based Violence Strategy was published in June 2022 and one of the key actions outlined in the strategy is the doubling of refuge spaces available in Ireland. Wexford is the first of 13 priority locations nationwide to begin construction on a new Domestic Violence Refuge and the government is committed to supporting the development of Domestic Violence Refuges in all priority areas by 2025.

Minister O’Brien commented, “I’m really glad to be in a position to announce this funding today. I know how hard Wexford Women’s Refuge and Wexford County Council have worked alongside my department to bring this project to fruition and now work can get underway.”

“The advancement of Wexford Women’s Refuge is an important milestone in the implementation of actions under the 3rd National Domestic, Sexual, and Gender Based Violence Strategy and indicates clear support for the important work of improving DSGBV services across Ireland. Wexford Women’s Refuge is the first project to reach this stage since the Strategy was released in June, but will be the first of many such projects.”

Minister for Justice Helen McEntee said, “when our Zero Tolerance policy to address Domestic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence was launched, I announced that one of its overarching goals is to ensure that everyone who needs a refuge space will get one. The development of this state-of-the-art facility in Wexford will ensure that this will be the case in the South-East shortly.”

“The development of the Wexford refuge is an important step on the road to doubling the number of refuge spaces to 280 over the lifetime of the Third National Strategy. We will also make it easier, through the work of the planned Domestic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence Agency to deliver the highest standard of refuge accommodation, in the most efficient way. To do this we will ensure that organisations are assisted at all stages of the process from start to finish. I am very grateful to Women’s Wexford Refuge for their hard work in designing and planning this refuge and look forward to it opening in 2024.”

Minister O’Gorman commented, “local voluntary bodies, such as Wexford Women’s Refuge, are the heart of these vital services. It’s through their determination and fortitude that the real world impact of funding and support from Government and Tusla are realised and make that important difference for people when they need it the most. The work in relation to the new domestic violence refuge in Wexford is reflective of what can be achieved when the broader government, representatives from the Domestic Violence sector and local authorities act together. That collaborative approach will see the Third National Strategy on Domestic Sexual Gender Based Violence become a success and a greater number of refuges provided nationwide.”

Minister of State at the Department of Justice, James Browne, noted, “this is a very positive development for Wexford in ensuring that the necessary emergency supports are there for people who need them the most. Wexford Women’s Refuge have been at the frontline of supporting women and their children who have been subjected to domestic violence for nearly 25 years.”

“This new building will provide a world class, purpose built refuge for victims of domestic violence. It will provide so much more than just a safe place. Children will be able to play in a space designed just for them. Teenagers, will have their own space to do their school work, or to simply relax. Everyone involved in this project have placed the needs of victims at the centre of what they have done here.”

“As impressive as this new building is, ‘refuge’ for victims of domestic violence is more than just bricks and mortar. It is understanding, compassion and unwavering support. I want to thank Vicky Barron and the Board of directors and the staff and volunteers who work so tirelessly for WWR for providing just that.”


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