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e-Newsletter  |  April 2019

May is Domestic Violence Prevention Month

Local community events:
 

National Day to Remember - 1 May 2019

A candle lighting ceremony to honour those who have lost their lives as a result of domestic and family violence.  Includes entertainment and guest speakers.
  • 5.00-5.30 pm - Meet at the War Memorial on Alexandra Headland to participate in the march to the candle lighting ceremony.
  • 5.30-6.30 pm - Ceremony - in front of Loo with a View, Beach Terrace, Mooloolaba
For further information, call SCOPE regional D&FV Service, 07-5430 9300.

The Voice In Me - Coolum Beach - 3 May 2019

Women Alive Festival - Beerwah - 4 May 2019


The objectives of Domestic Violence Prevention Month are to:

 

•  Raise community awareness of the social and personal impacts of family violence;

•  Promote a clear message of zero tolerance for domestic and family violence in our communities and workplaces;

•  Enhance visibility of the help, protection and support that is available for those experiencing domestic violence; and

•  Encourage perpetrators to take responsibility and seek support to change.

In the News -

Attorney-General’s Media Releases:

Budget increase provides funding certainty for legal assistance services – 2 April 2019

Australian Law Reform Commission Review of the Family Law System – 10 April 2019


Other:

Australian Law Reform Commission Media Release - ALRC Review of the Family Law System - Final Report (10 April)

The Australian Law Reform Commission report, Family Law for the Future: An Inquiry into the Family Law System, was tabled in Parliament today by the Attorney-General, the Hon Christian Porter MP.

The ALRC has made 60 recommendations for reform.

The ALRC recommends that the resolution of family law disputes be returned to the states and territories and that the federal family courts eventually be abolished.  Under the current system, children fall through the gaps between the family law courts, the child protection systems and the state and territory responses to family violence. This can be remedied only by having a single court focused on the best interests of the child that is able to resolve all family law, child protection and family violence issues together.

In the federal family courts, family violence, child abuse or other complex factors now make up the majority of cases. However, there is no federal body with investigative powers akin to a child protection department and the family courts have no capacity to compel a child protection department to intervene in a family law case or to investigate the court’s concerns.

More broadly, the ALRC’s recommendations will ensure that the law provides a framework that assists families who are experiencing relationship breakdown to make arrangements for their children, property and financial affairs.

ALRC President, the Hon Justice Sarah Derrington, said, “These recommendations seek to ensure families have access to a dignified and efficient process that resolves disputes effectively and at the lowest cost financially, emotional and psychologically, while also giving primacy to the interests and safety of children affected by those disputes.”

Implementing the 60 recommendations will:

  • promote an integrated court response to family law matters, child protection matters and matters involving family violence, providing better protection to individual litigants and their children;
  • assist separated couples  and the courts to arrive at parenting orders that promote the best interests of the child;
  • assist separated couples  to understand and comply with parenting orders, reducing conflict thus contributing to the welfare of children;
  • increase the proportion of separated couples who are able to resolve their parenting matters, and property and financial matters, outside the courts through a process that ensures fairness and reduces ongoing conflict;
  • reduce acrimony, cost and delay in the adjudication of family law disputes through the courts and ensure family law matters are subject to rigorous case management by the courts to reduce delay and cost;  and
  • ensure that families who seek assistance from the family law system with legal and other support needs receive that support in a coordinated and efficient manner.

On 27 September 2017, the ALRC received Terms of Reference from the Attorney-General , the Hon Senator Brandis QC to conduct the first comprehensive review into the family law system. During the inquiry the ALRC held 179 consultations across Australia, including in all state and territory capitals as well as regional centres such as Townsville, Cairns, Alice Springs, Mt Gambier, Newcastle, Albury, and Wollongong. The ALRC received over 1200 written contributions, including 440 public submissions in response to an Issues Paper and a Discussion Paper

To read the full report, click HERE.

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Law Council of Australia media release - Rejection of 'deeply flawed' Family Court merger plan a win for Australian families (4 April) 

Australian families are better off with a stand-alone, specialised Family Court, said the Law Council of Australia, who applauded the Senate’s rejection of a court merger.

Since legislation was first touted in May 2018, the Law Council has fought hard to ensure that a merger of the Family Court and Federal Circuit Court of Australia did not occur.

To read the full media release, click HERE.

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Non-Lethal Strangulation in Domestic and Family Violence

The Red Rose Foundation has been providing comprehensive training across Australia on the topic of Non-Lethal Strangulation.  The Red Rose Foundation acknowledges that domestic violence related deaths have any predictive elements and are largely considered preventable. The Red Rose Foundation actively works to end domestic and family violence related deaths in Australia including homicide, suicide and accidental deaths that arise from incidents and or/histories of domestic violence.

To listen to a recent podcast from the ABC RN Law Report on current laws and strategies in place to deal with strangulation in family violence cases, click HERE.

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Family Court of Australia Media Release - The courts take vital steps towards reform with development of unified family law processes (5 April)

The legal profession and the community have called for changes to the family law system. In response, the Courts are taking a major step to improve family law in Australia. This includes establishing, for the first time, a common set of rules, forms and case management in the Family Court of Australia and Federal Circuit Court of Australia.

Read the full media release HERE.

oneplace Community Services Directory -

oneplace is an online community service directory for Queensland parents, families and professionals looking to find support.

Funded by the Queensland Government, oneplace lists every type of service, from parenting groups to domestic and family violence support services.  This has removed the need for Queensland FLPNs to maintain their own community directories. 

If you provide a community support service, you can list your service in oneplace

Go to www.oneplace.org.au for further information.
Forthcoming event -

The next event for Sunshine Coast Family Law Pathways Network will be held in June. Details will follow shortly.
New members - 

A reminder that the Family Law Pathways Network Sunshine Coast warmly welcomes new Members.  Membership is FREE to join: encourage interested colleagues to simply email their details to the FLPN Co-ordinator via this link.
 
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Family Law Pathways Network | Sunshine Coast
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