#BBCQT @bbcqt from North London.5th November ~ @bbcquestiontime

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05/11/2015 Thursday 22:35

David Dimbleby presents topical debate from North London.

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“I have concluded that it is now impossible to defend a system from accusations of bias and discrimination if it operates behind closed doors. Even as Minister for Family Justice, I find the rules make it hard for me to establish what is going on.

It is my job to reassure Parliament that the family court system is working properly. But how can I know? I can’t read newspaper reports of cases; I can’t just go and sit at the back of the court, as I can – and do – in magistrates’ courts. And how can MPs hold me to account for a system they cannot see? Parliamentary accountability for the family courts is wholly theoretical while the system remains closed. How can the influential Constitutional Affairs Select Committee conduct investigations into its workings?

And when we debate family law in Parliament, neither MP’s nor Ministers can really know what we are talking about. We have to legislate in the dark”. https://ukfathers.wordpress.com/…/join-us-so-we-can-demand…/Chris Grayling Parental Involvementhttp://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/chrisgraylingparentalinv… The amendments to the Children’s Act which were introduced by the Children & Families Act do not help the parents or the children the family courts are supposed to best serve. I think it’s very sad successive governments even those who pledged to end the misery of the family courts when they were in opposition have failed to provide families with a family justice system they can trust & respect. Once the father is eliminated, the state functionally replaces him as protector and provider. By removing the father, the state also creates a host of problems for itself to solve: child poverty, child abuse, juvenile crime, and other problems associated with single-parent homes. In this way, the divorce machinery is self-perpetuating and self-expanding. Involuntary divorce is a marvelous tool that allows for the infinite expansion of government power

.http://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/divorceasrevolutionbyste… One ‘problem family’ costs £250,000 a year

http://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/oneproblemfamilycosts250… Family breakdown ‘could cost taxpayers £46bn

http://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/familybreakdowncouldcost… Third of family break-up children lose contact with fathers

http://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/thirdoffamilybreakupchil… A Fathers role in a child’s life is a very important one

http://www.ukfamilylawreform.co.uk/afathersroleinachildslif…

UK Family Law Reform

UK Family Law Reform

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5 Reasons Modern-Day Parenting Is in Crisis, According to a British Nanny

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I generally am quite an optimistic person. I tend to believe that everything will work out for the best unless the evidence is overwhelmingly to the contrary, and anyone who knows me will tell you that I am not prone to drama. That’s why when I say that modern parenting is in serious trouble — crisis, even — I hope you’ll listen, and listen carefully. I’ve worked with children and their parents across two continents and two decades, and what I’ve seen in recent years alarms me. Here are the greatest problems, as I see them:

1. A fear of our children.
I have what I think of as “the sippy cup test,” wherein I will observe a parent getting her toddler a cup of milk in the morning. If the child says, “I want the pink sippy cup, not the blue!” yet the mum has already poured the milk into the blue sippy cup, I watch carefully to see how the parent reacts. More often than not, the mum’s face whitens and she rushes to get the preferred sippy cup before the child has a tantrum.Fail! What are you afraid of, mum? Who is in charge here? Let her have a tantrum, and remove yourself so you don’t have to hear it. But for goodness’ sake, don’t make extra work for yourself just to please her — and even more importantly, think about the lesson it teaches if you give her what she wants because she’s thrown a fit.

2. A lowered bar.
When children misbehave, whether it’s by way of public outburst or private surliness, parents are apt to shrug their shoulders as if to say, “That’s just the way it is with kids.” I assure you, it doesn’t have to be. Children are capable of much more than parents typically expect from them, whether it’s in the form of proper manners, respect for elders, chores, generosity or self-control. You don’t think a child can sit through dinner at a restaurant? Rubbish. You don’t think a child can clear the table without being asked? Rubbish again! The only reason they don’t behave is because you haven’t shown them how and you haven’t expected it! It’s that simple. Raise the bar and your child shall rise to the occasion.

3. We’ve lost the village.
It used to be that bus drivers, teachers, shopkeepers and other parents had carte blanche to correct an unruly child. They would act as the mum and dad’s eyes and ears when their children were out of sight, and everyone worked towards the same shared interest: raising proper boys and girls. This village was one of support. Now, when someone who is not the child’s parent dares to correct him, the mum and dad get upset. They want their child to appear perfect, and so they often don’t accept teachers’ and others’ reports that he is not. They’ll storm in and have a go at a teacher rather than discipline their child for acting out in class. They feel the need to project a perfect picture to the world and unfortunately, their insecurity is reinforced because many parents do judge one another. If a child is having a tantrum, all eyes turn on the mum disapprovingly. Instead she should be supported, because chances are the tantrum occurred because she’s not giving in to one of her child’s demands. Those observers should instead be saying, “Hey, good work — I know setting limits is hard.”

4. A reliance on shortcuts.
I think it’s wonderful that parents have all sorts of electronics to help them through airline flights and long waits at the doctor’s office. It’s equally fabulous that we can order our groceries online for delivery, and heat up healthy-ish food at the touch of a button on the microwave. Parents are busier than ever, and I’m all for taking the easy way when you need it. But shortcuts can be a slippery slope. When you see how wonderful it is that Caillou can entertain your child on a flight, don’t be tempted to put it on when you are at a restaurant. Children must still learn patience. They must still learn to entertain themselves. They must still learn that not all food comes out steaming hot and ready in three minutes or less, and ideally they will also learn to help prepare it. Babies must learn to self-soothe instead of sitting in a vibrating chair each time they’re fussy. Toddlers need to pick themselves up when they fall down instead of just raising their arms to mum and dad. Show children that shortcuts can be helpful, but that there is great satisfaction in doing things the slow way too.

5. Parents put their children’s needs ahead of their own.
Naturally, parents are wired to take care of their children first, and this is a good thing for evolution! I am an advocate of adhering to a schedule that suits your child’s needs, and of practices like feeding and clothing your children first. But parents today have taken it too far, completely subsuming their own needs and mental health for the sake of their children. So often I see mums get up from bed again and again to fulfill the whims of their child. Or dads drop everything to run across the zoo to get their daughter a drink because she’s thirsty. There is nothing wrong with not going to your child when she wants yet another glass of water at night. There’s nothing wrong with that dad at the zoo saying, “Absolutely you can have something to drink, but you must wait until we pass the next drinking fountain.” There is nothing wrong with using the word “No” on occasion, nothing wrong with asking your child to entertain herself for a few minutes because mummy would like to use the toilet in private or flick through a magazine for that matter.

I fear that if we don’t start to correct these five grave parenting mistakes, and soon, the children we are raising will grow up to be entitled, selfish, impatient and rude adults. It won’t be their fault — it will be ours. We never taught them any differently, we never expected any more of them. We never wanted them to feel any discomfort, and so when they inevitably do, they are woefully unprepared for it. So please, parents and caregivers from London to Los Angeles, and all over the world, ask more. Expect more. Share your struggles. Give less. And let’s straighten these children out, together, and prepare them for what they need to be successful in the real world and not the sheltered one we’ve made for them.

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Four out of 10 divorce petitions flawed

Solicitors are being urged to check divorce petitions after it emerged that 40% have to be returned to them for correction owing to errors.

The statistic was quoted on Tuesday at a briefing session on a new divorce hub for London and the south-east, which is expected to handle 40% of all divorce work in England and Wales. Only cases that require a hearing will be transferred to the parties’ preferred court.

Work is being transferred from the 45 divorce courts in London and the south-east to the Bury St Edmunds hub on a phased basis. So far that transfer has been completed for 28 of the 45. By October all undefended divorce work, with the exception of urgent matters, will be processed through the new centre.

Present at the briefing were HH Judge Lynn Roberts, circuit judge with responsibility for the centre and HH Judge Martin O’Dwyer, head of the financial remedies unit. The session was chaired by Margaret Heathcote, London region chair of family lawyers group Resolution.

Solicitor Tony Roe (pictured), who broke the news that Bury St Edmunds would host the new hub, welcomed the fact that HMCTS has begun a dialogue with family solicitors. But he warned that the size of the task must not be underestimated.

‘HMCTS hopes for economies of scale, not to mention a better service,’ he said. ‘Indeed, the service said that there was a a backlog of 600 petitions in Brighton and Guildford going back three months and it was decided to transfer the work of those courts to Bury St Edmunds now.’

Transfer of work from London was planned for June but is now unlikely to happen before July.

Roe added: ‘HMCTS has quoted an alarming 40% of petitions which have to be returned for correction to solicitors’ firms owing to errors in drafting or procedure, for example failure to enclose issue fees, lack of signature or missing/incorrect details. It will pay practitioners to check and have someone else double check all petitions they plan to file.’

The session heard that new legal advisers, who will carry out some of the functions previously carried out by district judges, must not form a judgment on the facts relied on within petitions. Roe said solicitors were assured by HMCTS that they will not be turned away from any family court if they have an urgent petition or application.

‘[HMCTS] says that the solicitor submitting the need for urgency will be trusted,’ he added. ‘Let’s hope this happens, especially where there is little or no counter service available.’

Bury St Edmunds is one of about a dozen centres across England and Wales that will act as the single point of entry for all divorce and financial remedy applications. They are expected to be fully operational in all regions by December 2015.

 Readers’ comments (4)
  • Or alternatively courts are understaffed, and overwhelmed so they reject applications just to clear the backlog.

    The Land Registry used that trick frequently during extremely busy times.

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  • However this gives a wonderful opportunity for the parties to pause reflect and attempt reconciliation before tearing asunder the sacred contract of marriage.

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  • No, it really doesn’t. By that point, the parties are irreconcilable and wish to remove themselves from the legal construct of marriage.

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  • My experience so far with Southampton regional divorce centre is that a petition has been rejected because it indicated that the Petitioner was represented by a solicitor whose details and address for service appeared in the (correct) box on the form but then didn’t include the details of the P’s address for service in the box underneath. Well, that’s because the details had already been given in the right place, a point which the staff at every other Court I have ever used could understand and process appropriately.

    Then in another case they have mis-spelled the P’s name by not copying it correctly, obviously, and it wasn’t even an unusual name.

    I presume that these centres have taken on inexperienced clerical staff who have no prior knowledge of the legal processes.

    I predict more of this LAB/LSC/LAA type (remember them?) behaviour before I am very much older.

#ChristopherJefferies : But what about the rest of us?

The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies, Twitter reaction: ‘I’m sorry now… I thought he did it’

 Last night’s drama has provoked guilt and mortification on social media as it sets the record straight about the man wrongly accused of Joanna Yeates’ murder MORE
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Super Grieve (UK Human Rights Blog)
Whilst I have some sympathy with Christopher Jefferies,, and coincidently I was holidaying in Bristol that weekend, I wonder why the Attorney General of the day  Dominic Grieve QC MP  who’s mantra  was always to not become involved in individual cases although he did here. So why are the numerous parents ignored when they  fall fail to false accusations within the corrupt Family Court and Social Services system?
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