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Charlie Elphicke MP: Children should have a relationship with both parents after a separation

Elphickec_2Charlie is Conservative Member of Parliament for Dover and Deal. Follow him on Twitter.

Yesterday, the Government made a big step towards improving child welfare. It is looking to give children the right to know and have a relationship with both their parents following separation. A change in the law is likely to enshrine this right in legislation.

This is a real step forward for all of us who have been making the case for children to know and have a relationship with both their parents following separation.  The Government announcement also amounts to a rejection of the muddled and confused thinking of the recent report of the Family Justice Review - better known as the Norgrove Report.

Norgrove claimed that there was no need to change the law. In particular the report muddled equality of time with a relationship. A relationship is not about a 50/50 sharing of time - it is about knowing and having someone to turn to, someone to talk to who cares about you.

Is a change needed in this area? The numbers are pretty clear - in the UK one million children have no contact with the non-resident parent three years after separation. One million children who could benefit from having the mentorship, guidance and affection that good parenting is all about. A change in the law here will make a massive difference and do much to promote the welfare of children.


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