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Please Stop Saying Ashling Murphy Was 'Only Going For A Run', Campaigners Beg

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Please Stop Saying Ashling Murphy Was 'Only Going For A Run', Campaigners Beg

Women across the UK and Ireland have been impacted by the death of 23-year-old Ashling Murphy, who was murdered in County Offaly, Ireland last week.

The primary school teacher had been out for a run by the Grand Canal in Tullamore last Wednesday afternoon when she was attacked and killed.

As police continue to search for the killer, people have been calling for a more serious approach to target gender-based violence in Ireland.

Ashling Murphy's tragic death has sparked a conversation about gender-based violence in Ireland. (Credit: PA)
Ashling Murphy's tragic death has sparked a conversation about gender-based violence in Ireland. (Credit: PA)
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The murder has caused widespread anger and shock in Ireland and beyond, with tens of thousands of people attending vigils in recent days.

Echoing the sentiments of Sarah Everard campaigners last year, who pointed out that the 33-year-old was "just walking home" when she was kidnapped and murdered, the phrase "she was going for a run" started trending on social media in the wake of Ashling's murder.

The message highlights the fact that women can do everything right and still be targeted in gender-based attacks.

However, campaigners are now calling for a change in the narrative, pointing out that it doesn't matter what a woman was doing when she was attacked.

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Thousands shared this message to social media in the wake of Ashling's murder.(Credit: Instagram/@irishsupportqld)
Thousands shared this message to social media in the wake of Ashling's murder.(Credit: Instagram/@irishsupportqld)

Whether a woman was out for a run in broad daylight, walking alone at night, socialising with friends, or anything else, they should be able to get home safe, campaigners are arguing.

The Irish government are being called upon to do more to tackle all gender-based violence - regardless of the circumstances leading up to it.

Mary McDermott, chief executive officer at Safe Ireland, which campaigns for women and children’s safety, said the country does not have a minister with full responsibility for gender-based and domestic violence, saying it is “scattered” across various Government departments.

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(Credit: Twitter)
(Credit: Twitter)

Last week she told RTE Radio One's Morning Ireland: “Refuge and support services are under [the department of] children and the rest of the responsibility, which we know requires a whole of government response, is scattered across the rest of government departments."

Campaigners are calling for an end to gender-based violence. (Credit: PA)
Campaigners are calling for an end to gender-based violence. (Credit: PA)
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Minister for Justice Helen McEntee has since responded and said a new government strategy to tackle domestic, sexual and gender-based violence will be published by the start of March.

It would, she said, take a “zero-tolerance” approach to violence against women.

These calls for change come ahead of Ashling's funeral, which will be held on Tuesday, 18th January at 11am at St Brigid's Church, Mountbolous, and will also be live streamed.

Ms Murphy’s family have appealed for privacy at her family home home before the funeral mass.

Featured Image Credit: Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Éireann

Topics: News

Ali Condon
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