Under consideration PE1968: Restrict perpetrators of domestic abuse from using family court proceedings to continue tormenting their victims

Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to review existing legislation on family law and seek to stop perpetrators of domestic abuse causing further abuse and distress to partners and children by removing their ability to apply for contact orders under Section 11 of the Children (Scotland) Act 2020.

Previous action taken

I have written to the First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, but the response contained only general information about family law and my concerns weren't taken seriously.

Background information

Mothers and children are repeatedly put through the family court process when section 11 applications are made by former partners. Contact orders are given to the detriment of all the victims involved. The mother is forced against her will to force her child or children, who are also victims, to spend time with someone who has abused them. The term ‘best interest of the child’ is used very loosely and, in my view, domestic abuse isn't taken seriously.

The family court system is vastly underestimating the emotional trauma that is relived every day by victims of domestic abuse, even after the perpetrator has left the home. In my view, perpetrators of domestic abuse use the family court system as a way to continue abusing their victims. This happens even when there are no parental rights and no claim of interest, yet the Section 11 order can still be sought by the abuser, causing severe emotional turmoil for the victims.

  • Created by Angela Evans
  • Considered from 18 October 2022
  • Petitions can collect signatures until the petition has been closed

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