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September 30, 2022

European Funds Minister, head of the National Agency for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men (ANES) sign funding contract of the “VENUS- together for a safe life” Project. PM Dancila: Domestic violence cases register a worrying rise

Domestic violence cases register a worrying increase and fighting this phenomenon, as well as supporting the victims, are imperative, Prime Minister Viorica Dancila stated on Monday.

The Prime Minister participated at the Victoria Palace at the signing ceremony of the funding contract of the “VENUS- together for a safe life” Project by the European Funds Minister Rovana Plumb and head of the National Agency for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men (ANES) Gratiela Draghici.

“The data shows that, unfortunately, the domestic violence cases register a worrying rise. An indicator which reflects the gravity of this phenomenon is the large number of deaths caused by domestic violence. 1,374 people have lost their lives between 2009 and 2016 following the aggressions suffered. The entire society was impressed with the cases of the young women killed by their partners. The forms of aggression are of many types, not just physical and the victims of domestic violence are increasing form year to year,” Prime Minister Viorica Dancila stated at the Victoria Palace, at the signing ceremony of the funding contract of “VENUS- together for a safe life” Project.

Dancila argued that the promotion of the “VENUS” Project represents “a solid premises that thousands of people, women, men and children, will be protected from domestic violence and will regain their confidence and dignity.”

The head of the Executive brought to mind the measures taken regarding the provisional protection order.

“We took action in this sense both during my activity as MEP and as Prime Minister. One of the first measures was meant to regulate the provisional protection order, which would allow the policemen to rapidly intervene in situations of imminent danger. Afterwards, we came up with clearer regulations for promoting gender equality and combating domestic violence, and coherent intervention procedures for specialists, so that a real protection of the victims may be obtained. Today, we are making a very important step, ensuring the funding for a programme under which we can offer protection, safety and support to the people aggressed in their own families. The ‘VENUS – together for a safe life’ Project is estimated at 11 million euro and it will be funded from European funds, through the Human Capital Operational Programme,” Viorica Dancila explained.

According to the PM, the funds earmarked will help to build social homes organised in a network integrated at national level, in which the victims of domestic violence can be protected, receive psychological, legal assistance and live for a period of time, until they can lead a normal and independent life.

“Moreover, these people will be supported through professional training programmes, in order to integrate professionally and socially. This support is essential because in many cases, the victims are afraid to leave their home because they don’t have a job and they are financially dependent on the aggressor. This program will be developed at national level in collaboration with local authorities. (…) The victims of violence must have the courage to seek help, to know their right to a normal life. It is our responsibility to support them, and I want them to know that they have the Government behind them and that we are together,” Dancila said.

In her turn, European Funds Minister Rovana Plumb stated that the investments in the social area accomplished through this project “are starting to shape up in terms of creating a network at national level for the setting up of 42 innovative homes, for the protection of the domestic violence victims, based on partnership with local authorities.”

“Over 6,600 victims of domestic violence will benefit from both protected homes in the 42 administrative-territorial units, as well as counseling for reinsertion on the labor market, as well as legal counseling, psychological counseling, social assistance. At the same time, over 360 specialists in the social area dealing with preventing and combating domestic violence will be trained in such a way as to be able to deal with all the challenges of combating this phenomenon that has grown,” the minister said.

Plumb mentioned that the project, worth 11 million euro, has a 48-month implementation period.

President of the National Agency for Equal Opportunities for Women and Men (ANES) Gratiela Draghici brought to mind that under the Governing Programme, the Executive took on, in a first stage, to build 20 homes for the victims of domestic violence.

“Taking into account the scale of the phenomenon, we decided to set up through this project a protected home in each county and, thus, we developed the project creating the innovative, integrated network of protected housing with national coverage. The purpose of the social service – protected housing – is to provide social needs, increase the quality of life and promote the principles of cohesion and social inclusion by ensuring specialist assistance to the victims of domestic violence, hosting with a capacity of up to 6 places for a period of 12 months, depending on the complexity of the cases,” Draghici mentioned.

According to her, through the services supplied, the victims “would be able to benefit from institutional support in order to relocate within a national network, depending on the training and/or re-training opportunities, identified through the National Protection Programme of Domestic Violence Victims.”

Gratiela Draghici added that throughout one year, in which the victims of domestic violence benefit from the integrated services offered within this project, they “have the opportunity to make the transition toward a social-economic independent life, so that they are no longer economically captive by the aggressor and not return to the domestic environment where the phenomenon occurred, but to have the determination to act in court or to divorce (…), as well as to receive counseling.

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