The family law system is crucial to the wellbeing of many thousands of lives, especially young children. Problems in the family law system are causing hardship, and in some cases tragedy, for many Australian families. Labor believes that urgent action is needed, not just another inquiry.
Regrettably, the Morrison Government has chosen to ignore the advice they have already received to improve the family law system and to better protect families from domestic violence.
Earlier this year, the Australian Law Reform Commission made 60 recommendations for reform to the family law system that the Morrison Government has ignored. The Government has also ignored recommendations made in 2017 by the Standing Committee on Social Policy and Legal Affairs on a better family law system to support and protect those affected by family violence.
Urgent action is needed to make our family law system work better for all Australians who come into contact with it, including greater support for families who are caught up in the trauma of separation and the provision of more resources to reduce delays.
While Labor did not support the Government’s proposed new Parliamentary inquiry into the family law system, Labor members who sit on this inquiry will try to ensure that the inquiry is carried out with respect for all witnesses, that it considers carefully all evidence before it, and that it produces a report of genuine value.