April 10, 2021

“We will be there to guarantee everyone’s rights”

“Mom has to be there to help others and see that everything is fine.” This is how Laura, a magistrate from Alcoy (Alicante), tries to make her five-year-old daughter understand that she must go to court to continue with her guard. “We have to be there to guarantee everyone’s rights. It is basic.”

Laura Cristina Morell is a magistrate of the court of first instance and instruction number 4 of the Alicante municipality and also dean of the judicial party, which forces her to be “always” connected, especially now that, she admits, “a lot of information is coming” on how to act during the alarm state.

A moment in which, underlines Efe this 35-year-old Valencian, the judges have to be more than ever. “We will be there to ensure that no one’s rights are violated. Citizens have to know that.”

Laura wants to make this aspect clear even assuming that there are still a lack of protection in the courts, which, she admits, “are a focus of transmission”, but aware that there are others who may need it more, and also grateful to all her colleagues in the sector which, he stresses, are giving callus these days.

“I have asked for glasses, gloves, disposable pens … Gloves and pens we are doing well, but with masks we have had to prioritize and alcohol is under minimum”, explains Efe Laura, who belongs to the Professional Association of the Magistracy, majority in the sector.

In her role as dean, Laura has also agreed to close the elevators in the courts because they do not allow the safety distance to be maintained: “I do not want people to enter.”

The first week of alarm in Spain coincided with Laura’s guard who, she admits, has been “quiet” due to the drop in crimes against property (theft, theft …) although, unfortunately, an increase has been noted in the issuance of burial licenses, which has forced the Ministry to order that the civil registries open tomorrow and afternoon.

It has also taken over the Registry and the gender violence court, where last week it perceived that cases remained, as well as those of domestic violence, although perhaps with a slight decrease. Despite this, he had to issue a protection order to a victim.

There was also no lack of an example of that “minority” that has skipped the mantra of “stay at home”, or calls to find out how the new situation affects the regime of visits to minors.

Laura, who recognizes that, unlike other professions, hers allows her to telework outside the guards, stresses that she has detected something unusual in the courts: silence. “People are very quiet and sometimes a little tense. They have relatives at risk, it’s understandable.”

On a personal level, he admits that the coronavirus, like millions of Spaniards, has changed their habits: “I no longer wear rings; they are very difficult to clean. I leave my shoes outside the house and throw the clothes to wash as soon as I arrive.”

One day last week, she recalls, her five-year-old daughter asked why she had to go to work “if everything was closed.” “Because Mom is a judge and she has to be there to help others,” he replied. “It is the only way I have to tell him,” he says.

Concerned, like everyone else, about the impact of the virus and cases such as that of the Alcoy nursing home, which registered 28 deaths this Friday, Laura wants to emphasize that “Justice is also human.”

“I am a normal and ordinary person, who goes out to applaud at 8 in the afternoon and that you are in the supermarket with a mask. I have small children, mother, father, a 91-year-old grandfather … My toga is not velvet , which is also very hot, “he jokes, perhaps aware that sometimes citizens feel alienated from reality.

Miriam Mejías


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