An MP is asking his parliamentary colleagues to support his battle to get changes to the way Britain’s family courts treat cases of parental alienation.
Andrew Bridgen, MP for North West Leicestershire, says there is a ‘straightforward’ solution to the heart-breaking problems families face over access to their children when relationships breakdown.
Parental alienation happens when one parent deliberately turns a child against the other, leading to fear, hostility and disrespect towards one and loyalty and trust towards the other.
Mr Brigden, who is supporting D.A.D.S (Dads against double standards) and the newly-formed National Association of Alienated Parents, says in a letter to other MPs: “Our family court system has many critics. Fathers complain they can’t see their children. Mothers speak of harassment. Parents can spend years in court.
There is a straightforward solution to most of these difficulties. A specific ‘stand-alone’ fault in the family law system has been identified, and, it can easily be put right. A turnkey reform is ready-to-go.
It entails the first introduction of elementary guidelines – of the kind everyone assumes are already in place. Support for the project includes Sir Paul Coleridge on behalf of the Marriage Foundation. To put the initiative on the road, we need a group of say a dozen MPs to co-sign a letter requesting a meeting with the Minister, Lucy Frazer QC.”
And part of a major drive to get parental alienation recognised administrators of the Facebook group D.A.D.S have published a list of contact details for members of parliament and are urging their growing number of supporters to send a copy of Mr Brigden’s letter and a copy of the NAAP report to them.
Dean Lambert for the group said: “We are asking members to send MPs a copy of the NAAP report about Parental Alienation in the UK along with a letter from Andrew Bridgen MP asking other MP’s to support him with changes to the family law system.”
The consumerwatchfoundation.com published the report last year. You can read it here https://www.consumerwatchfoundation.com/category/parental-alienation-the-report/ – you can also get a copy from D.A.D.S on Facebook.
Meanwhile, in an unprecedented move, D.A.D.S and NAAP are presenting a video to every school in the UK.
The video tells in no uncertain terms how PA affects children and offers guidance on how schools can spot those who are being used as a weapon against one of their parents.
And it pulls no punches, revealing how teachers and members of staff can make things worse by their reactions towards an ‘absent’ parent. Too often they accept as fact information given to them by the parent with care.
Andrew John Teague, from Swansea, many of the 20-odd thousand members of his Facebook group D.A.D.S. (Dads against double standards) and colleagues from the NAAP, the National Association of Alienated Parents, will begin the marathon task of distributing the videos in mid-September.
There are currently 32,113 schools in the UK. Of these, 20,925 are primary schools and 4,168 are secondary schools. There are 2,381 independent schools, 1,256 special schools and 351 pupil referral units. 1,617 schools are in Wales – 1,287 primary, 200 secondary and 70 independent schools. 5,045 schools are in Scotland and 1,170 schools in Northern Ireland.
It is estimated that it will take more than six months and cost thousands.
Andrew said: “It’s a massive task I know, but we are determined to complete it. If we have to we’ll stand at every school gate in the country and hand the videos to staff. That’s how important it is for the people who very often spend more time with our children than we do!”
Schools have £90 billion to spend each year – but D.A.D.S and NAAP are supplying for free what could be one of the most important lessons for teachers regarding family life.
“The schools spend money on all sorts of teaching aids but we are giving them a lesson for the lives of their pupils for nothing – it’s going to take months. But we’ll just keep going.”Cafcass – seen by so many victims of the phenomena as a major part of the problem – says it deals with 125,000 cases of parental alienation each year. Sarah Parsons, the assistant director, says the organisation now recognises that the alienating parent’s aim is to persuade the child to permanently exclude that parent from their life.
But campaigners still believe Cafcass if failing in its duty to stop it happening and they are campaigning to have parental alienation a criminal offence.
Andrew said: “Every school that has the DVD sent to them will be listed on Twitter and Facebook and NAAP will send a covering letter with each DVD highlighting the need for schools to take notice.”
At the same time the groups will be sending out the NAAP report – which was first published last year on the consumerwatchfoundation.com – to every MP in England, Scotland and Wales.
Then on November 5 Andrew and the others will begin to deliver the report to each court house up and down the country.
Andrew, from Swansea, has been climbing hills and mountains across the UK in a bid to ‘shout his message from the heights’.
He has climbed in Scotland, Wales and the Lake District.
Recently he tackled the notorious Welsh Three Peaks which takes in Snowdon in the North, Cadair Idris in mid-Wales, and Pen y Fan.
He was joined by Julie Newcombe who as a mother has suffered the sadness of becoming alienated from her off-spring. Julie decided to make the gruelling walk after meeting Andrew at a previous event.
They left a hand-painted pebble at the top of each mountain.
NAAP which was launched in London in March this year describes itself as being about is about exposing and dealing with all aspects of parental alienation to protect children’s futures.