- Unacceptable delays in the Family Court System are robbing children of the love and care of parents
- Britain's Family Law system is in meltdown and it is the children who are suffering most
- Children's lives are being damaged by the poor performance of Cafcass, the organisation which acts as the eyes and ears of family court judges. The main union of its staff, NAPO, has issued a statement of concern about delays and unsatisfactory levels of service, and shared parenting groups such as Families Need Fathers wholly agree.
Cafcass has a difficult job to do in both public law (children going into care) and private law (divorce and separation), and its staff are liable to be criticised whatever they decide. But the delays in producing reports have become totally unacceptable, and the government must take action. How can it be right for a child to have to wait nine months to see their mother or father while the paperwork is shuffled or a caseworker found?
Cafcass' workload is heavier than it should be thanks to this country's failing family law process. When separating parents cannot agree on the arrangements for the children, the current system places an unfair amount of power in the hands of one parent and then invites the two of them to attack each other.
The administration of family law in this country is in dire need of reform, and shared parenting groups such as Families Need Fathers are looking to the next government to tackle the problem.
Jon Davies, CEO of Families Need Fathers underlines that ‘a childhood can never be replaced. Too many children are missing out on the love and care of both parents and their extended families through these terrible delays. There has to be a better alternative to this crazy system that encourages families to tear themselves apart and is, in itself, child abuse.’
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