What to do in the case of spousal abuse

Nobody has the right to threaten you, or insult you or hurt you. Not even an immediate relative has the right to force you to have sex, or to humiliate you in public, control your access to money, or to stop you from having friends or meeting relatives.

Even if you are from another country, if any of those things happen to you, you are being abused and can ask for help:

  • If you have been attacked or think that you might be soon, you can ask the police or court to protect you.
  • If you have already been abused or are frightened, you can also ask for help from the police, directly or through a person you trust.
  • If you have been injured, go to a medical centre. You will receive treatment and you will be able to explain how you were hurt and ask for a copy of the medical report that will be very useful.
  • Even if you have not been injured, you can ask for help from the town council's Social Services department. They will help you, will tell you about your rights and will help you get out of your situation. They will offer your psychological support, legal advice, financial help and temporary accommodation.

The Department for the Attention of Victims of Gender Violence of the Interior Department of the Basque Government has set up a free and confidential 24 hour telephone service (900840111), for women who are being mistreated and for those who wish to report this type of situation. The telephone is answered in Basque, Spanish, English, French, Romanian, Chinese and Arabic.

Foreign women who have been recognised as victims of gender violence and do not have a permit, may obtain a Residence Permit under exceptional circumstances.