Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Judge Boshier, Come Out And Say It: The Family Court Kills Males

Judge Boshier, Come Out And Say It: The Family Court Kills Males

By Union of Fathers

The Union of Fathers commends Judge Boshier for fronting up to suicide following Family Court proceedings, however, he fails to mention it is males committing suicide after dealing with the Family Court.

The gender of suicides is overwhelmingly male and we welcome the Court’s attention to the issue that the Union of Fathers has been talking about for many years.

Union of Father’s National President Allan Harvey says Judge Boshier cites statistics of 18 Family Court related suicides in the past year, but the real question is, has Judge Boshier completed a gender analysis of his own statistics?

“If not, why not? If he has then why does his speech today not include the research findings,” says Harvey.

Harvey says children suffer when their parents are absent in their lives, however, the Family Court grants only 13% of children shared care where they can enjoy and benefit from the input of both their parents in meaningful ways.

The usual Family Court pattern of children having contact with their fathers only every second weekend, two days a fortnight, is archaic and absurd.

“This is a cause of despair, mental health issues and suicide,” says Mr Harvey. “When parents are excluded from their family, their children’s lives and their homes, vulnerability is greatly increased.”

Harvey says Judge Boshier talks about “holistic approaches”, “primary prevention”, “social oversight of rehabilitation” and “access to programmes”.

However, one can quickly see that by using such obtuse language he is avoiding acknowledging that these deaths are his responsibility.

“Let’s hope he lobbies Parliament to make rapid changes before more children lose their parents and have their lives damaged by parental suicide.”

“Our experience in Union of Fathers is the Court labels complex situations with simple labels like victims and perpetrators. Judge Boshier does the same in his speech today.
“We note that Judge Boshier proposes working more closely with community groups and talks about providing a “sense of support” and “direction” to Family Court litigants.

Harvey says what we now have to ascertain is whether Judge Boshier is serious about solving the problem or does he see fathers as an allowable loss either by taking them out of children’s lives through questionable custody orders or having them suicide.

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