A DOMESTIC violence support worker in calling on owners of holiday properties in Cork to make them available for use by victims during the coronavirus crisis.
June Murphy, who is a former county councillor, is the current support worker for east Cork for the You Are Not Alone (YANA) domestic violence organisation.
She said that she has received a number of calls in recent days by people living in abusive homes who say that the abuse has become worse because of restrictions on movement.
Ms Murphy said: "Now that people are living such a restricted life and businesses have been closed down, we do not have access for people to move into b&bs and hotels for example. They have been taken out of the equation now."
And she said that refuges in the city are always full, while there is no refuge anywhere in the county.
She added that the refuges were heavily impacted by the housing crisis as escalating rents made it difficult for victims to move quickly out of refuges and into private rented accommodation.
Ms Murphy said that holiday homes in seaside resorts across Cork will be empty because of the coronavirus spread and she is appealing to anyone who has a property which they would be willing to let on a short term to victims of domestic violence to come forward.
She said: "At the moment, we are faced with having no place available for people coming into us. What would work is a self-contained apartment or house."
She added that the owners of such property would need to be willing to provide the accommodation on a short term basis as opposed to long term leases.
Assistant Commissioner Michael Finn, who has responsibility for Cork city and county, appealed to anyone living in situations of violence to come forward to gardaí.
He stressed that garda protective services units have not been re-directed into any other roles during the coronavirus crisis, because of fears that incidents of domestic violence could increase during the crisis.
* Anyone with property who is willing to make it available can contact June Murphy by email at email@example.com.