Young people have sent out the message that further improvements to the family justice system must be made in order to protect the well being of children. A board made up over 30 young people who have all been involved in family law proceedings has suggested various ways in which the system could be improved.
The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service [Cafcass] set up the advisory group called the and their five key proposals are as follows:
• Case times must be brought down in order to protect the best interests of children
• Support services should be available to children who are affected by family legal proceedings
• The court should keep children informed about the progress of cases they are involved in and any significant rulings that may be made
• Support should be provided when arguments become particularly acrimonious
• Children should be consulted more often about which elements of the family justice system are effective and which are not
Chief Executive of Cafcass Anthony Douglas pointed out that improvements to the family justice system are already being made. The total length of cases which involve children issues in divorce or other family law issues, have already been slashed from an average time of 56 weeks in 2010 to just 46 weeks today. However, he was also quick to highlight that this was merely the start of the process and that further gains must be made.