Consultation For Vulnerable Witnesses Giving Evidence In Family Courts

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Researching Reform

The government has now published a consultation inviting everyone to share their views about how to best to support vulnerable witnesses giving evidence in court. 

The consultation refers to Draft Practice Direction 3AA, Vulnerable persons: participation in proceedings and giving evidence, which is intended to support a new Part 3A of the Family Procedure Rules.

The new Part 3A of the Family Procedure Rules place a duty on the court to consider:

a) whether a party’s participation in proceedings is likely to be diminished by reason of vulnerability and, if so, whether it is necessary to give “participation directions” for assistance; and

b) whether the quality of evidence given by a party or witness is likely to be diminished by reason of vulnerability and, if so, whether it is necessary to give participation directions. (This provision on giving evidence extends to children.)

The questions asked in the consultation are:

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Penalty Rates Debacle Masks Real Agenda

Real News Australia

By General Maddox.

In recent weeks we have seen many news reports and heard plenty of chatter on social media about the looming cuts to penalty rates for retail, hospitality fast food & pharmacy workers. There’s been plenty of hear-say and conjecture without many actual facts seeing the light of day. Nor is it made clear to us what the real agenda behind the move actually is.

Firstly let’s clear up a few things before we start going “postal” on our employers.Not everyone is affected by the coming changes.See the graph below for clarification…


The other important thing to remember is that the big players like your Coles, Woolworths, Kmart, Target, Bunnings, etc… are on enterprise bargaining agreements with their employees. This means they don’t pay the minimum award wage in most cases. Many other employers do the same. Some may even be on a salary agreement.

It’s this award…

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Behind closed doors

Parental Alienation

We can speculate as to a few plausible reasons why this might be the case.

  1. An alienating parent has commenced the process of alienation covertly, behind closed doors (in a manner not dissimilar to child sexual abuse). By the time family law and other interventions are involved the child is effectively alienated or at least the relationship between parent and child is compromised.

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Parental Alienation generally takes place behind closed doors

Parental Alienation

Like other forms of domestic abuse, Parental Alienation generally takes place behind closed doors. Publicly, the parent is keen to appear good and responsible, working hard to promote a good relationship with the other parent.   You may be told:  “I’ve tried and tried to persuade him to come, but he really doesn’t want to see you, and I don’t think it’s right to force him”.  Privately, though, the complete opposite may be true. A vital first step is to recognise that this is going on.

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The most dangerous and severe of the alienation types

Parental Alienation

The most dangerous and severe of the alienation types is what is known as the ‘’obsessed alienator.’’ This type of parent will stop at nothing to destroy the relationship between the non-custodial parent, and the child(ren). Obsessed alienators are dubbed this because they are ruthless in their behaviors against their exes and usually try to bankrupt them through incessant court battles. Most likely these types have narcissistic personality disorder, because they are unafraid of the court system, and will do virtually anything to keep the non-custodial parent away from their kids. The children of an obsessed alienator usually end up having great disdain for the alienated parent, because children simply can’t process things as adults do, and are left feeling abandoned by the alienated parent. From what I’ve read, this type is the one that has the greatest capacity to do the most harm to a child, for once…

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