Turkey's Family Ministry aims to prevent divorces
ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
A group of couples take a ride at Marmaray before getting married at an organization held by Istanbul’s Bağcılar Municipality in this file photo. CİHAN photoThe Family and Social Policies Ministry is working on a project in which the family ombudsman will offer psychological support to married couples who are seeking to get a divorce.
The families who applied to court for a divorce will be offered support and they will be able to receive four-session consultations to address their problems if they prefer to do so, Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin told reporters after attending a conference about violence against women held in Ankara yesterday.
“The family will decide [whether to continue the support] after four sessions. If deeper support and consultancy service is needed, then we will manage this with different methods. We will monitor the process closely. If the couples decide to continue [their marriage] with a happy and peaceful process, this would benefit us all,” said Şahin.
The legal ground is being prepared for the project, which is to be conducted jointly by the Family and Social Policies Ministry, the Justice Ministry, and family court judges.
“We have a law in the budget talks now. We will firstly prepare the legal ground by inserting this project into the current law,” said Şahin. She also emphasized that there wouldn’t be any pressure on families to attend the support sessions.
‘Couples want support’
“This is completely based upon the people’s demand and free will. There is no compulsory practice in this. We are providing a support mechanism based upon voluntary participation,” said Şahin. The family ombudsman will provide the support upon the needs and demands of the family. They will decide whether the couple needed psychological, economic, legal or other support.
Şahin said they had launched the system in five pilot cities and 75 out of a total of 450 couples decided to continue their marriage after support. According to a recent survey, 62 percent of people said they did not consult anyone but they needed consultancy in times of divorce, Şahin recalled.