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21 Jan 2022

Louth senator welcomes Government campaign to combat sharing of intimate images without consent

Louth senator welcomes Government campaign to combat sharing of intimate images without consent

Fianna Fáil Senator Erin McGreehan

Louth Fianna Fáil Senator Erin McGreehan has welcomed the announcement that as part of the government’s plan to tackle the sharing of intimate images without consent, victims can now report the sharing of illegal content online to Hotline.ie/report.

Hotline will help to get images and video removed from the internet.  

The reporting mechanism is one aspect of a new Department of Justice awareness campaign to highlight that sharing or threatening to share intimate images of another person without their consent is a form of abuse, and there are now laws in place to stop it with penalties of up to seven years in prison.  

Senator McGreehan commented: “This is a very welcome announcement it follows on from the Government legislating for this last year with the legislation known as Coco’s Law.  

“We now live in a digital world and respect for one another should always be a priority. However, as we know people constantly disrespect, bully, threaten, and harass online. Coco’s law was very much needed and long overdue, it was legislation that Fianna Fáil campaigned for during the last Dáil term and I am glad in Government they delivered.  

“This campaign makes the law more effective and empowers victims to report.”  

Coco’s Law, otherwise known as the Harassment, Harmful Communications and Related Offences Act, which was enacted on 10 February 2021, created new offences which criminalise the non-consensual distribution of intimate images.

Bringing Coco’s law into operation and launching an awareness campaign was a key action contained in Justice Plan 2021, which was launched by Minister McEntee earlier this year.  

Independent research commissioned by the Department of Justice found that one adult in 20 claims to have had an intimate image of themselves shared to an online or social media site without consent.

This rises to one in 10 among 18-24 and 25-37 year olds.  

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