This book is essential for: all lawyers practicing in the area of family law; the book may also be of interest to other stakeholders in the justice system, including the judiciary, family justice counselors, policy makers, mediators, parenting coordinators, collaborative law specialists, supervised access facilitators, and anyone interested in how the justice system can improve its support of children.
Current to: November 2011
Legislation, case law, and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child support hearing from children in family justice processes, particularly where a child’s best interests are being determined. Research shows that children of all ages are profoundly impacted by family breakdown and there are ways people within the justice system can improve their practice to support children through this difficult time. The need to find better ways of supporting child participation has been raised in A New Justice System for Families & Children: Report of the Family Justice Reform Working Group to the Justice Review Task Force (BC), released in 2005, and is the subject of the current review of the BC Family Relations Act. This publication provides lawyers and other key family justice stakeholders an opportunity to learn more about: the meaning of child participation and the research behind it; the current state of the law; options to effectively support and implement child participation in one’s daily practice in BC, including the “Hear the Child” interview practice begun, piloted, and continuing in Kelowna.
Course Materials Coordinators
Ronald J. Smith — Smith Peacock, Kelowna
Suzanne Williams — International Institute for Child Rights and Development (IICRD), Victoria
CLEBC Program Lawyer