Australian Family Court Seeks To Be More Father Friendly
THE Family Court has been talking to men's rights groups in an effort to become more "father-friendly".
The court is also making its staff who deal with families undergo training to help them better understand the male perspective in divorce.
The initiatives were introduced by the court's new Chief Justice, Diana Bryant, who is considered by men's groups to be more sympathetic to their concerns than former chief justice Alastair Nicholson.
Sue Price of the Men's Rights Agency, who attended the most recent meeting in Brisbane on Thursday, said: "We were a bit taken aback when we were asked (to attend the forum) because the Family Court has pretty much ignored the way men feel."
The meeting was attended by representatives of the court, the Child Support Agency, Relationships Australia, Catholic welfare agency Centacare, and men's groups. "We got out the butcher's paper and the whiteboards and we really talked about how we could make the system work better for men," Ms Price said.
"We discussed the fairness of the court decisions, and why the court seemed to regard fathers as the lesser parents. We asked why fathers should be made to feel like criminals. It was extremely productive."
Ms Price said Chief Justice Bryant did not attend the meeting "but we spoke before she took over the court (last year) and I have the greatest respect for her".
"It's obvious that she wants to co-operate with men's groups and make the court more men-friendly," she said.
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