Gender violence funding increase far short of demands

Protesters against gender violence outside Madrid city hall. Photo: Europa Press via 20 minutos
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• Socialists, women’s groups see last-minute PP budget increase as insufficient
• Under pressure, 4mn euros more allocated toward gender violence prevention

Over the protest of women’s rights groups and opposition political parties, Spain’s conservative governing Partido Popular (PP) has agreed to a minimal increase of just 4 million euros in funding in the 2017 federal budget of programs aimed at preventing gender violence, bringing the total amount allocated toward prevention to just 6.5 million euros and overall funding to combat violence against women by their domestic partners to 31.7 million euros.

The total 31.7 million euros allocated in the PP budget falls far short of the 120 million euro increase that feminist groups demonstrating in Madrid on Thursday said is needed and represents less than one third of the total 109 million proposed by the Socialist party (PSOE) to cover the 26 amendments to the budget it had proposed as necessary to deal with gender violence and domestic abuse nationwide.

Only two of the Socialists’ 26 amendments were included at the last minute by the PP in its final budget draft and only then after the Socialists threatened to withdraw completely from the much-touted National Pact against Gender Violence (Pacto de Estado contra la Violencia de Género), to which all parties in Congress have ascribed in principal. Those additional expenditures agreed to by the PP on Monday represent an increase of just 4 million euros over 2.5 million originally proposed for gender violence prevention programs.

So far in 2017, a total of 28 women in Spain have been murdered by their domestic partner or ex-partner, representing a 47 percent year-on-year increase to date in deaths linked to gender violence and domestic abuse. Last weekend, Spanish news media reported that three women were murdered by their partners, two of the victims in the regional community of Madrid and a third in Murcia.

► Read More in Spanish at Público, El País and 20minutos …

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