The Union of Students in Ireland launched its SHAG week campaign across the country in 6 different colleges (NUIG, NCI, IT Carlow, GMIT, DKIT and IADT) this week with two key messages – to get tested and to ask for consent, after a survey published in December 2015 showed an increase of STIs in Ireland by 4% and the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre reported an increase in rapes and sexual assaults.
The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre said the victims of recent rape and sexual assault went up to 303 in 2015, from 221 in 2014, but only 1 in 10 are reported. This figure is only for the Rotunda hospital where the sexual assault treatment unit (SATU) is located which covers the Dublin and Leinster area. There are 6 units in the country – Dublin, Cork, Galway, Donegal, Limerick and Mullingar.
The report showing the increase in STIs in Ireland was published 2nd Dec 2015 by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre and the HSE. This report was prepared by Gillian Cullen and Dr Derval Igoe and showed that in 2014, there were 12,626 notifications of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) in Ireland, an increase of 4% compared to 2013. The most commonly diagnosed STI was Chlamydia, with 6,695 notifications in 2014. The burden of STIs remains greatest among those aged 15 – 24 year olds.
“USI’s SHAG week campaign has two core messages – for students and young people to go get tested and to ask for consent.” Kevin Donoghue, President of the Union of Students in Ireland, said, “We are reminding students that they must look after their sexual health. This means getting tested regularly and using condoms and dental dams to protect themselves from the risk of contracting an STI. Getting tested is quick, painless and usually free! The reported increase in rapes and sexual assaults in Ireland is very worrying. Research shows that only 1 in 10 cases are reported. What’s even more worrying is this figure is for the Rotunda hospital alone.”
USI is delighted to have organizations such as SpunOut, HIV Irland, Aids West and Well Woman Centre onboard for the 2016 SHAG week.
“We want to open up dialogue and provide students with the language and information that is needed in relation to sexual consent.” Donoghue said, “Initiatives such as the proposed consent workshops in Trinity College Dublin are very important in empowering young people and changing attitudes about what is and is not appropriate behaviour for all students.”
“The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre commends USI for their initiatives in the area of prevention of sexual violence through their campaigns, particularly the Say Something and #AskConsent Campaigns during SHAG week.” Ellen O’Malley Dunlop, CEO of the DRCC, said “We hope they get the support they need from both the college authorities and from the students themselves. The recent conversations about sexual consent and the need for on-going age-related programmes from early childhood to third level institutions are very welcome.”
Victims of recent rape and sexual assault up to 303 in 2015, from 221 in 2014, and only 1 in 10 are reported.
Published 2nd Dec Health Protection Surveillance Centre and the HSE
This report prepared by Gillian Cullen and Dr Derval Igoe,
In 2014, there were 12,626 notifications of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) in Ireland, an increase of 4% compared to 2013 of all STIs increased in 2014.
The most commonly diagnosed STI was Chlamydia, with 6,695 notifications in 2014.
The burden of STIs remains greatest among those aged 15 – 24 year olds.
For further survey results check –