Give children a legal right to contact with grandparents and their extended family
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In the United Kingdom today there are many children who are being deprived of contact with their grandparents and other extended family members . This can be the consequence of a divorce or separation and children who have had loving, healthy relationships with their grandparents for often many years may suddenly find themselves cut adrift .
The children may not be permitted to see their extended family at all or indeed have any telephone contact or correspondence of any description. The number of children who find themselves in this vulnerable position is reflected in the growing number of grandparents who are seeking contact orders through the Family Courts.
This petition is calling on the Family Court to recognise that it is not in a child's best interests to be wilfully deprived of healthy, loving relationships with family members and there should be a positive assumption that contact with grandparents and the extended family will continue unless it is proven to be harmful to the child .
Contact should be recognised as the right of the child , not the parent and a lengthy , expensive court process which is not always affordable should be unnecessary . The Family Court needs to acknowledge that it is an abuse of parental power to deny children their fundamental right to contact and a parent who does this is in breach of the law .
Until contact can be driven by the child themselves it is the duty of our courts to protect younger children from being alienated from their grandparents and extended family .
Until these changes in family law are implemented the most vulnerable members of our society will remain with no choice and no voice and one is too many .
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