THE OPPRESSIVE AND TYRANNICAL MATRIARCHY IN THE IMPLEMENTATION
OF LEGAL SYSTEMS IN FAMILY COURTS
BOB GELDOF ACCUSES 'BARBARIC' FAMILY COURTS OF 'KIDNAPPING CHILDREN
FROM THEIR FATHERS'
MR GELDOF SAID: 'IN THE NEAR FUTURE THE FAMILY LAW UNDER
WHICH WE ENDURE WILL BE SEEN AS BARBARIC, CRIMINALLY DAMAGING,
ABUSIVE, NEGLECTFUL; HARMFUL TO SOCIETY, THE FAMILY, THE PARENTS
AND THE CHILDREN IN WHOSE NAME IT PURPORTS TO ACT' - 'HERE IS
ONE MORE REPORT THAT EMPIRICALLY NAILS THE OBVIOUS FACT THAT
TO REMOVE A CHILD FROM THEIR FATHER (IN THE HUGELY VAST MAJORITY
OF CASES), THEIR GRANDPARENTS AND OTHER FAMILY, THEIR SCHOOL
AND FRIENDS, IS WHOLLY DESTRUCTIVE TO A CHILD AND ITS FAMILY'.
accuses 'barbaric' family courts of 'kidnapping children from
Last updated at 4:11 PM on 8th December 2009
Report: Bob Geldof
has accused the secretive family courts of 'state-sanctioned
Bob Geldof today
accused the secretive family courts of 'state-sanctioned kidnap'.
The pop star turned
campaigner said the 'barbaric' family law system wrecked the
lives of children and their families.
He spoke as he launched
a report that severely criticised the way family courts deal
with cases - particularly in which one separated parent wants
to move far away from where the other lives, taking the children
It said that most
decisions in such cases - which are conducted behind closed
doors and never become known to the public - cause children
Mr Geldof said:
'In the near future the family law under which we endure will
be seen as barbaric, criminally damaging, abusive, neglectful;
harmful to society, the family, the parents and the children
in whose name it purports to act.
'Here is one more
report that empirically nails the obvious fact that to remove
a child from their father (in the hugely vast majority of cases),
their grandparents and other family, their school and friends,
is wholly destructive to a child and its family.
'How much longer
must we put up with the state sanctioned kidnap of our most
vulnerable? Because in effect that's what "leave to remove"
The singer's protest
comes at a time of growing controversy over the workings of
the family courts, which have been repeatedly blamed by fathers'
groups in recent years for favouring mothers and shutting separated
fathers out of their children's lives.
EILEEN FAIRWEATHER: Lost children of the Empire... and how uncovering
their story has torn my family apart
Justice Secretary Jack Straw has tried
to lift the secrecy around family cases by ordering the courts
to allow journalists to sit in cases. Judges, however, have
responded by imposing orders that ban them from reporting what
A series of senior judges, including
the President of the Family Division Sir Mark Potter, have delivered
speeches in which they have tried to warn Mr Straw off further
attempts at reform.
Sir Mark has drawn a contrast between
the welfare of the child and the 'demands of the press in relation
to so-called transparency'.
Sir Bob is the most high-profile figure
to suggest that the courts are deficient and that the secrecy
hides decisions that damage children.
Lifting the secrecy:
Justice Secretary Jack Straw has ordered the courts to allow
journalists to sit in on family cases
'How much longer
do we tolerate the vested interest intransigence of the appalling
UK family justice system?,' he asked.
'How long before
just one of them admit they have got it all wrong and apologise
to their myriad victims?
'This report is
important, timely and vital. To accept its findings, which could
have and should have, been conducted at any time in the past
30 years, is to accept the awful conclusion that rather than
Solomon-like, resolving our tragically human disputes with understanding,
compassion and logical pragmatism, the courts have consistently
acted against society's interest through the application of
prejudice, gender bias and awful impartial cruelty.'
The report, Relocation
and Leave to Remove, was published by The Custody Minefield,
a legal information website. It said there were 'serious flaws'
in the handling of child relocation cases where one separated
parent wants to move a child away from the other, either within
Britain or abroad.
A spokesman for
the Ministry of Justice said: 'We are creating a family court
system that is transparent, accountable, and inspires public
confidence in its good work, while still protecting the privacy
of children and families involved.
'That is why we
have allowed greater media access to family courts which will
lead to greater trust.'
Mr Geldof's intervention
came three weeks after a landmark family case in the Appeal
Court in which a mother was forced to hand over a son to his
father despite claims that the switch would be 'almost cataclysmic'
for the child.
In the case - which
could be reported except for the names of those involved - Lord
Justice Wall said that the 11-year-old boy had suffered emotional
harm because of his separation from his father and should go
to live with him.
The boy said that
his father had 'ruined my life' and said he would 'punch and
kick' rather than leave his mother's home.
THE ORIGINAL PUBLICATION
IN "Mail Online News"
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Bob Geldof accuses 'barbaric' family courts
of 'kidnapping children from their fathers'