Dozens of victims of domestic violence in direct need of shelter are put up at hotels each year because there are no available emergency places, said on Friday.
Some 12,00 women who are abused by their partners use the shelters each year as a place to recuperate and then move on with their lives. Some 4,500 children and 200 men also apply to shelters for a temporary stay.
However, the pressure on social and sheltered housing is causing women to stay in the shelters for longer. This means that women who flee the home because they are in direct danger cannot be taken in and have to be put up at hotels.
In Vlaardingen some 12 women who fled their homes had to live in hotel accommodation this year while in Utrecht 16 women and a number of children in acute danger were put up at hotels because the shelter had run out of emergency places.
‘We have reached crisis point,’ Marleen van Eijnhoven, chair of the national women’s refuge network told the broadcaster. ‘The risks to the women’s safety are too great and we need a national approach to tackle the problem.’
Health minister Hugo de Jonge has said he takes the situation seriously and that he will talk to the federation of Dutch municipalities VNG and sheltered accommodation organisation Federatie Opvang to find out more.
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