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What we should be asking politicians: "Do you support one parent being able to remove the other parent from a child's life upon separation?"

Reversing the onus

Shouldn't we be asking our politicians if they support one parent being able to remove the other parent from a child's life upon separation?

Because that's what happens now - leaving a battle in the Family Court (with all its expert reports, delays and horrendous expense) as the only resort for an excluded parent.

I bet you most would say no.

And shouldn't the Family Court be the one to make this decision? - ie: excluding one parent from a child life when - and only when - there is good reason for doing so.

Should children be exposed to the increased risk of abuse and negligence by having one of their parents ejected from their lives by the other? After all 80% of child abuse occurs in single parent families.

Shouldn't the family Court be protecting children from loosing a parent and the heightened risk of abuse and neglect that is the consequence?

The question that is most often asked is "Do you support shared parenting" not surprisingly, gives rise to answers like "Yes, of course, if there isn't any violence or abuse". Or "Yes, the new Family Law legislation provided for this". Indicating that they believe the so called reforms to the family have ended the practice of predominantly excluding one of the child's parents if there is conflict (which of course if there wasn't - they wouldn't be in court).

When the old Family Violence issue is raised by politicians perhaps we should ask them if a child should be exposed to harm and sexual abuse because their parents fight, when the parents can share in the care of their child without having anything to do with each other (with change overs at school through third parties etc.).

The only way we can make sure decisions to exclude one parent aren't made arbitrarily by the other parent (and their lawyers) is to introduce Restoration of Contact Orders (RCOs) that are immediately enforceable just like AVOs.

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