Is the Government counting the cost to save womens lives?
Most people are counting the pennies after the Government has increased taxes on a bottle of wine by 14 pence, and set higher taxes for car drivers in yesterday’s Budget.
But is the Government counting the cost on the amount needed to protect all women in the UK from living with violence? A new report by Amnesty International and Southall Black Sisters out today has revealed how hundreds of women face being homeless or staying in an abusive relationship because of legislation which refuses them the chance to access a refuge.
As Amnesty’s Kate Allen explains on today’s Comment is Free, women who are living in the UK either on spousal visas or student visas or who have been trafficked into the country for example are not allowed to gain access to a refuge or specialist support services because of their immigration status.
BBC News Online reports how in Northern Ireland about 100 women every year are affected by this rule.
As Baroness Helena Kennedy points out on The New Statesman website the Government is clearly betraying these women. Under obligations in international law, the British government has a duty to protect all women living in its jurisdiction – no matter what their status.
Well, this is just the beginning of the campaign for Amnesty International. Keep an eye on www.amnesty.org.uk/svaw to find out how the campaign is going.
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.