To: Minister for Justice Liz Truss MP, Minister for Education Justine Greening MP & District Judges

Child First: Safe Child Contact Saves Lives

Child First: Safe Child Contact Saves Lives

We are calling on the Government and family courts to ensure there are no further avoidable child deaths as a result of unsafe child contact with a perpetrator of domestic abuse.

In order for this to happen the family courts must not allow known abusers to continue their abuse either in family courts or through decisions taken by family courts that put children and women's lives in danger.

Why is this important?

"No parent should have to hold their children and comfort them as they die, or be told that their child has been harmed in an act of revenge or rage. There are often many facets to one family's breakdown, and all too often children’s voices are not heard or acted upon" (Claire Throssell, mother of Jack and Paul who were killed in October 2014 by their father after he was granted unsupervised contact with them by the family court).

Over the last 10 years, 19 children and 2 women have died as a result of unsafe child contact, formal or informal, with a parent who is also a perpetrator of domestic abuse. These deaths were avoidable. To protect children, the family courts must put children's safety at the heart of any decisions they make about contact with a known perpetrator of domestic abuse.

Women’s Aid’s Child First: Safe Child Contact Saves Lives campaign is calling on the Government and the family courts to protect the children that it has been set up to keep safe. Whilst only a minority of child contact cases, after the parents have separated, are taken to the family courts many of these cases involving domestic abuse result in contact decisions which do not put the children's safety and best interests first. This can leave them, and their non-abusive, parent in considerable danger.

Visit the Women’s Aid website to find out more about this campaign: http://www.womensaid.org.uk/childfirst.


Reasons for signing

  • Going through Family Court at present with ex partner who has sexually abused my child. He was emotionally abussive to me. No one (judge, social workers, cafcass) is listening to me, no one understands the impact of the emotional abuse on my child and my self, let alone there are "not enough evidence" for the sexual abuse. One week to finish the case and it looks they will grant visits. I feel helpless.
  • Currently in court with ex partner who is munipulating the courts system to further abuse and control me. He was never interested in the children, he's abused them and he's abused me. I will stand my ground
  • In court 5th june for 3rd time, my sons dad is a psycopath, had to stop contact again after another dv incident and then my son telling me his dad slapped his baby brother from another mothers face!!! He is not even 1 yet that poor child, and yet he still probably get his access!! 2/3 years of worry so far i dont know how much more i can take

Updates

2016-01-25 17:11:33 +0000

20,000 signatures reached

2016-01-21 17:19:31 +0000

10,000 signatures reached

2016-01-21 06:06:55 +0000

5,000 signatures reached

2016-01-20 16:48:38 +0000

1,000 signatures reached

2016-01-20 13:52:30 +0000

500 signatures reached

2016-01-20 10:13:52 +0000

100 signatures reached

2016-01-20 09:25:45 +0000

50 signatures reached

2016-01-20 08:32:54 +0000

25 signatures reached

2016-01-20 07:42:37 +0000

10 signatures reached