OPEN LETTER: CALL TO PROTECT VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IN FAMILY COURTS
A group of organisations that assist and speak on behalf of the most disadvantaged Australians have written an open letter to Government calling for the introduction of legislation to protect victims of domestic violence from being directly cross-examined by their abuser in family law proceedings.
Victims of domestic violence are more likely to agree to a poor settlement in a parenting matter than proceed to trial due to their fear of being cross-examined by their abuser. This places children at greater risk of spending time with an unsafe parent. Protecting victims of domestic violence in the family law system has the flow on consequence of better outcomes for vulnerable children.
Bringing the family law system in step with other courts across Australia is critical to the response to domestic violence. Legislative protection from direct cross-examination is a strong and effective measure that will support domestic violence victims and ensure that good outcomes are reached which prioritise the safety and well-being of vulnerable children.
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