A new awareness campaign is being launched today targeting sexual harassment and sexual violence.

Television, radio and online advertisements will air over the next three years as part of the 'No Excuses' campaign.

Ireland has the highest level of claimed sexual harassment in Europe with 32% of women between the ages of 18 and 34 saying they had experienced some form of sexual harassment in the last 12 months.

The 'No Excuses' campaign, costing almost €1 million this year, is designed to tackle the issue.

Both male and female perpetrators feature in the ads, which cover a number of scenarios ranging from sexual harassment in the workplace and unwanted physical attention at a bar to an attempt to expose someone in a locker room.

The ads, launched by Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan, will be broadcast across media platforms from tomorrow.

Reported sexual offences are at a record high in Ireland, with over 3,182 sex crimes recorded by gardaí in 2018 - a 26% increase on the previous year.

Mr Flanagan said the ‘No Excuses’ initiative was designed to "spark a national conversation" adding the ultimate goal was to reduce and prevent the incidences of sexual harassment and sexual violence.

"We have on a daily and nightly basis behaviour which is unacceptable. Often times it goes without comment, but we need to change," he said.

Chief Executive of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre, Noeline Blackwell, has said bad behaviours often happen with the consent of other people.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Today with Sean O'Rourke, Ms Blackwell said the purpose of the new awareness campaign targeting sexual harassment and sexual violence is to highlight the different sexual harassment scenarios.

Often, she said, people think these situations are normal and non-harmful.

"If you see somebody at risk call the authorities, call the gardaí, notify the bar staff, if it's going on in a bar.

"Don't turn away. Because, so often, these behaviours happen with the consent of the rest of us, if that consent is withdrawn that in itself will reduce the incidents."

Ms Blackwell also welcomed the recommendations outlined in a report by John Gillen that in order to protect a complainant in a rape trial, the public should be banned from attending trials.