Women trapped in violence
The report highlights the difficulties faced by women with insecure immigration status (i.e. they are not UK residents and perhaps depend on spousal visas), who experience domestic violence but find it near impossible to leave home and seek refuge because of the government's refusal to provide them with financial support in their own right.
The report gives details of one such case, Ana, a Polish woman in Northern Ireland who fled a violent partner but then had to rely on the charity of a local Women's Aid refuge when she was refused housing benefit by the NI Housing Executive. She is just one of scores of cases annually here.
We plan to follow up the media launch with meetings with political decision-makers here, who have the power to help such vulnerable women.
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.