In Germany, there are a total of 7,786 spaces in shelters for women and their children. According to the Istanbul Convention (in which states have agreed on guidelines for the protection of women from violence), however, approximately 21,500 spaces would be necessary. Therefore, Germany is lacking more than 13,000 women’s shelter spaces. This is reported by ZEIT ONLINE, citing an inquiry from the Left party in the Bundestag.

Therefore, there is a lack of around 13,000 spaces, with significant regional differences. While there is an average of 1 shelter space per 10,800 inhabitants throughout the country, there are 2 in Berlin and Bremen, but only 1 in Saxony for every 25,000 inhabitants.

If women are not entitled to cost coverage, they have to pay for their stay in the shelter, varying by state: between €7 (Berlin) and €53 (Bremen) per day and place. This can result in monthly costs amounting to four digits, in addition to their regular living expenses.

Heidi Reichinnek, the chairwoman of the Left party group in the Bundestag, finds it “particularly insidious that the victims fleeing violence also have to pay for their shelter space themselves.” She demands the abolition of the co-payment and the “full funding” of the violence protection system throughout the entire country – as originally provided for in the coalition agreement. Reichinnek expresses disbelief at how catastrophic the situation is for women and their children affected by violence in Germany.

According to the Ministry of Family Affairs, every third woman in Germany becomes a victim of physical and/or sexual violence at least once in her life. About one in four experiences physical or sexual violence from her current or former partner at least once.