Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Spanish woman of gypsy origin after she was denied a widow’s pension by the Spanish state.


European Court for Human Rights in Strasbourg has agreed, six votes to one, with a Spanish woman of gypsy origin after she was denied a widow’s pension by the Spanish state. It ruled that article 14 which prohibits discrimination, and article 1 on the protection of property of the European Convention on Human Rights had both been violated.The Spanish Government has said that her marriage, under the gyspey rites at the age of 15, was not valid in law.But despite the fact that gypsy weddings are not legal in Spain the court in Strasbourg recognised the arguments of the woman, Maria Luisa Muñoz, known as ‘la Nena’. She had six children with her husband who died in the year 2000, and was left without any payments despite the fact that her husband, a labourer, had paid into the Spanish social security system for more than 19 years.Her battle has taken nine years, but now she will be paid a pension as well as the 70,000 € the EU court ordered she receive in compensation.Commenting to Cadena SER radio after hearing the news she said
‘I am happy, they have realised we are normal’.

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