Victory against “parental alienation”
The Domestic Abuse Bill is now going through Report stage in the House of Lords. This is when Lords can put amendments to the Bill which can be voted on.
Yesterday (8 March) we were lobbying Lords to OPPOSE an amendment which would have included in the definition of domestic abuse ‘behaviour deliberately designed to damage the relationship between a child of the parent and the other parent’. This would open the way for violent fathers to allege ‘parental alienation’ or to claim that mothers or children who report domestic violence, especially sexual violence, are actually domestic abusers! The amendment described parental alienation but without calling it that, and it was potentially dangerous to women and children whom the Bill aims to protect.
TOMORROW 10 March
Baroness Jones is presenting an amendment on the "Presumption of Contact" which we are lobbying for - See our full briefing to the Lords here.
There was significant opposition to this amendment particularly from Baroness Bennett and Baroness Helic who both spoke really well against it – see their speeches ⇒
and at the end of the discussion the government made clear they are opposed to “parental alienation” being in the Bill, and the amendment was withdrawn! Victory to all those of us who have been exposing the how PA has fast become the default argument of abusers against any mother who raises safety concerns.
BUT there is reference to PA in the “Statutory Guidance” which goes along with the Bill WHICH WILL BE VOTED ON and we need to keep up the pressure to get it out altogether . . . watch this space . . .