The scope of this Bill is to incorporate all legislation dealing with equality in order to ensure legal certainty and elevate the principle of equality to a right in itself, making it applicable to all spheres of life. The Bill also implements the Twelfth Protocol to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms into national law
In order to address financial barriers that victims of domestic violence may face and which may be a reason for not pursuing their case in court, the Government will offer a legal aid service by specially trained lawyers who will be engaged for this purpose
With the closure of all schools and child-care centres during the COVID-19 pandemic, many parents were forced to stay at home in order to look after their children. The Government set up a Parent Benefit for parents employed in the private sector of Malta, with children under 16 years of age, who were not able to work from home and who due to the impact of COVID-19, after 8 March 2020 could not go to work to take care of their children
The new Act on Gender-Based Violence and Domestic Violence provides for the substantive articles of the Council of Europe Convention on prevention and combating of violence against women and domestic violence (‘Istanbul Convention’) to be enforceable as part of the Laws of Malta; to promote and protect the right of everyone; to repeal the Domestic Violence Act (Chapter 481 of the Laws of Malta) and the Act on the ratification of the Istanbul Convention (Chapter 532 of the Laws of Malta) and introduces amendments to various laws.
The Act is intended to regulate cohabitants by introducing rights and duties depending on the status of the cohabitants. It introduces three different forms of cohabitation, that is, de facto cohabitation, cohabitation by means of a contract between the parties and cohabitation by means of a unilateral declaration.
Amendments made to the Equal Opportunities (Persons with Disability) Act listing fourteen rights rendering the said rights enforceable. Amendments also strengthen the KNPD’s regulatory role to ensure that the rights of persons with a disability are safeguarded