There are some situations where bureaucracy interferes with common sense and human compassion. At the moment, there is a perfect example of this type of scenario in Malta, as a number of women face eviction from shelters due to circumstances beyond their control. Specifically, they have gone to the shelter with their children to run away from abusive husbands. However, because they are no longer married, they do not have proper legal residency in the country and can be evicted from the shelter with nowhere else to turn (without residency, these mothers cannot obtain a job).
Human rights lawyer, Lara Dimitrijevic is fighting the legal battle on behalf of four women in this situation. She explained, “One of the women has been living in the shelter for the past three years and three months, without a regular income and caring for her toddler. She cannot work because her kid is so young . . . she doesn’t benefit from any incentives or schemes, such as free childcare centers, that would allow her to at least go look for a job.”
Unfortunately, much of this stress also falls on the children involved, who are obviously innocent of any wrongdoing and find themselves in an unstable situation. Hopefully, Dimitrijevic’s efforts will be successful so that both present and future women who find themselves in such horrible straits are able to have a clear path towards sufficiency and a home to call their own. With the international community looking on, it becomes more likely this will become a reality.